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I — 

TALKS IN MY 
STUDIO 



TKe Art of Seeing 
Facts and Fancies About Art 
Flct tires ^ ^ M j^ 



A PUIN GUIDE TO 

SKETCHING FROM NATURE IN 

WATER COLOR 

By J. IVXY 



THE WHITAtiER <a KAY CO 
SAN rB.ANCl$GQ 




LIBRARY 



UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA. 



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TALKS IN MY STUDIO 



€it TLxt of Ikeeinff 

SutM 9M Janrieit akout 3ltt 



TOGETHER WITH 



A PLAIN GUIDE TO WATEE-COLOE PAINTING 
AND SKETCHING PROM NATURE 



BY 
JOHN IVEY 




u.".-.'-/ sITY 



SAN FRANCISCO 
THE WHITAKER AND RAY COMPANY 

(mOOBFOBATBD) 

1903 



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OOPTBIOHT, 1903 

By J. IvBY 

▲LL BIOHTB BBSnVID 



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TO THE MEMBERS OF 
THE JOHN IVEY WATER-COLOR CLUB 

OF 

PORTLAND, OREGON 

THIS HANDBOOK IS INSCRIBED BY THBIB 
DEVOTED SBBVANT 

THE AUTHOR 

MONTEBIT» CALIFOBNIA 

January 1, 1908 



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PREFACE. 

This little volume is intended to replace the author's 
Plain Guide to Landscape-Painting in Water-Colors^ With 
Helpful Hints for Viewing Nature and Art, which met 
with a flattering reception, and is exhausted. In the 
original preface to the " Guide " the author said: — 

** The author of this ' Guide ' to a most fascinating art 
justifies its publication on the modest ground of its sim- 
plicity. It is compiled with the endeavor to impart to 
the amateur the fundamental knowledge which is neces- 
sary to enable him to become a master, and to help all 
lovers of nature to discern her subtlest beauties and her 
most secret revelations, in order that they may be quali- 
fied to estimate the excellencies and faults of landscape 
pictures. Its limits and scope preclude the possibility of 
including instruction in drawing, and its omission must 
not be held to imply that we do not appreciate the im- 
portance of drawing and design. 

" Experience has taught us, however, that the study 
and practice of color frequently serve to awaken an 
interest in Art, which the drier study of drawing would 
not, and they certainly help a student to select that 
branch or form of Art for which he is best fitted. More- 
over, the charm of color encourages the beginner to more 
frequent practice of drawing from nature than he would 
otherwise do, while concurrently with the practice he 
will use one of the many admirable handbooks on Per- 
spective, to acquaint himself with its rules, and it must 
be admitted that it is only by practice that the facility of 
drawing can be acquired. 

'' Since water-color has asserted itself in the hands of 
many of the world's great modern masters as the best 
medium of interpreting the tenderest and most charming 
passages of atmospheric effects, and, moreover, has been 

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6 PREFACE. 

proved to be absolutely permanent in character, there is 
naturally' a rapidly increasing interest exhibited toward 
it on the part of all lovers of pictures and of wealthy 
collectors, and the author would humbly hope that this 
little handbook may contribute, in some measure, to the 
development of an art which is particularly adapted to 
transcribe and repeat atmospheric glories of the * Golden 
West.'" 

To the instruction intended for beginners is now pre- 
fixed the substance of some lectures delivered before 
the Chautauqua assemblies of the Pacific Coast, and 
other literary associations, as well as some talks in my 
studio, which generally were suggested by the eager 
inquiries of pupils. J. I. 

MONTBBEY, CaLIFOBNIA, 

January, 1903. 



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CONTENTS. 

PART I. 
Talks in My Studio. 

CHAPTER I. p^„ 

Thb Abt of Seeing 11 

CHAPTER n. 
Facts and Fancsbs about Abt 26 

CHAPTER III. 

PiCTUBBS 35 



PART II. 

A Plain Guide to Water-Color Painting and 
, Sketching from Nature. 

CHAPTER I. 

A Fbw Gbnbbal Rbmabks, with Tablb of Habmony of 
COLOBS 43 

CHAPTER n. 
Explanation of Somb Tbbms Usbd in Painting .... 45 

CHAPTER III. 

List of Matbbials, with Uses of thb Vabious Colors 
Desgbibbd 53 

CHAPTER IV. 
On Mixing Colobs, with List of Usbful Combinations . . 62 

CHAPTER V. 

On Bboad Washes fob Skies, Sea, Flat Distances, etc. . 73 

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8 CONTENTS. 

CHAPTER VI. p^„ 

On Vabioub Mbans and Methods, "Taking Out," " Scum- 
bling," "Glazing," "Sponging," "Scraping," "Paint- 
ing OVNB," ETC 78 

CHAPTER VII. 
On Skbtgring fbom Natubb 83 



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PART I 

TALKS IN MY STUDIO 



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PART I. 

TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 




CHAPTER I. 

THE ART OF SEEING. 

The study of Nature and Art is so full of pure and un- 
alloyed enjoyment, so wrapped about and intertwined 
with what is most enchanting to the eye and heart of 
man, — touching by mystic charm of light and form and 
color the higher sentiments, — that it must at least be 
interesting to all; but it is my endeavor here to make it 
as practical as possible, so that those who may desire to 
tread in the pathway, and to listen to the message of 
the Great Spirit of Beauty in the world, may be helped in 
their devotion and encouraged in their practice. 

There are few places on God's earth where the art of 
seeing can be better fostered than in California. 

It is not alone in the transcendent sublimity of her 
mountains, climaxed in the snowy summits of the Sierras, 
surrounding the awe-inspiring grandeur of the Yosemite, 
where rainbows are multiplied, and the eternal voice 
of many waters from falls and cataracts speaks out 
the message of indescribable sublimity, nor in her 
cultivated valleys, where orange blossoms fill the soft 
atmosphere with their seductive perfume, and the ram- 
pant glory of her roses, and almost every other flower 
that blooms on this fair earth; 'tis not alone in these 
extremes of her favored grandeur and beauty that one is 
transfixed with admiration and delight, but in her more 
commonplace garb and environments. The sunshine 
and soil, the ozone and the zephyrs gently borne from 
the measureless sea which kisses her coast, make life one 
continuous pleasure; and those provided with means of 

11 



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12 TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 

modest dimermons — the poet and painter, the preacher 
and toiler — may almost everywhere find their highest 
ideals, — to some, presenting visions of poetic fancy, and 
to others, of practical, unexampled plenty. 

It is interesting to note the rapid development, in these 
Far Western homes, of those things which mark the high- 
est standard of culture and refinement in the older cities 
of the East and in Europe. In no country and in no age 
of the world's history has there ever been exhibited such 
a quick cultivation of literature, music, and art among 
new and mixed and busy colonists as this state of Cali- 
fornia reveals, and it should be its happiest and most de- 
lightful feature, that with the natural haste to grow rich 
its people should laudably desire to surround themselves 
in their homes with the beautiful and artistic, without 
which riches are valueless indeed. 

Now, there is nothing which so surely indicates the 
measure of a people's advancement in the more culti- 
vated phases of civilization and refinement as the home, 
just as there is nothing which yields so much pleasure 
and actual enjoyment to its possessor. 

The home in which books, pictures, and music are con- 
sidered the most essential embellishments must neces- 
sarily hold in closer affection, and foster in nobler 
instincts, the growing sons and daughters of the house- 
hold, than the home whose glory is only decorative tin- 
sel and showy furniture. There are homes in every 
Western city, of course, in which such things are found, 
but it must be confessed they are much rarer than the 
size and condition of our cities warrant one to expect, 
and in multitudes of cases the lavish expenditure exhib- 
ited in the showy decorations of mantels, carpets, uphol- 
stery, etc., is a bitter rebuke to their owners for the 
total absence of literature and pictures. Such a house 
is like a pretty idiot. It is not, however, the writer's in- 
tention to discuss the matters of artistic decoration and 
intellectual appointments of a home, but rather to di- 



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THE ART OF SEEING. 13 

rect attention to some of the silent revelations of beauty 
which are so constantly before us, and which are so 
eminently qualified to educate a discerning mind into 
just and enjoyable judgment and appreciation of things 
beautiful both in nature and art. 

There is nothing so. conducive to true judgment in 
matters of pictorial art as the practice of watching the 
phases and moods of nature, whether of atmosphere upon 
the landscape, or of passion upon the human face and 
figure. An eye trained to such watchfulness will soon 
discover both the meaning and the faults of pictures 
which the ordinary beholder of nature's surface will be 
unable to discern, and will revel in enjoyments to which 
the other is necessarily a stranger. 

Let me recall to your mind's eye a very common effect 
in this country, after the rains, when the parched brown 
of the foothills responds to the magic touch of the rain- 
drops in a burst of rapturous color. If you have not 
stood exactly where I will take you for a moment, you 
have stood before similar effects many times each 
winter. 

A few days after my arrival in Los Angeles in Novem- 
ber, 1887, and just as soon as I was miraculously deliv- 
ered from the tender mercies of a host of Philistines, 
called real-estate men, I found myself, one Sunday morn- 
ing, strolling cityward on Washington Street, far out 
beyond the Rosedale Cemetery. It was after the first 
rains, and I felt full of the delicious vitality and charm 
which the first rains give. 

Sauntering off the road to peruse an interesting an- 
nouncement which offered a big bargain to the first man 
who came quick enough with a deposit, I came to the 
edge of a pool, a lodgment of the rain in a hollow, a 
pool just sixteen yarda across, and in it, or upon it, was 
a vision of loveliness that I shall never forget. I have 
lingered by the silvery mirrors of other lands, and have 
haunted the richest bits of dear old England's lakes and 



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14 TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 

streams, — the inspiration of poets and the paradise of 
artists, — but, except on one occasion, when, riding past 
the garden of the poet Wordsworth, I saw the glory of 
a most perfect reflex in Rydal Water, I had never seen 
anything surpassing this. Such a vision of pure and 
tender color in water, with such perfect definition of 
detail, it is impossible to describe, and until you take an 
opportunity of looking into that or a similar pool, with 
your face cityward, you cannot realize the enchantment. 

At my feet was the ethereal blue of a rapturous sky, 
and against it was the spotless snow of Old Baldy's 
crown, glistening under the sheen of the water like a 
celestial thing. The pearly gray shadows of the mon- 
arch beneath it came out with the sharpness and clear- 
ness of a touch of a pencil, while all the great range from 
Garvanza to Rialto was as clear and defined as the 
stones in the foreground. The city came next, its turrets 
and towers clear-cut against the gray of the mountains; 
its red-painted roofs and the interspersed foliage looking 
as bright as the blush of a maiden. Then, fringing the 
face of the city, were line upon line of pepper and tall 
eucalyptus, interspersed with the gables, and chimneys, 
and windmills which stretch 'twixt Washington Gardens 
and Bosedale; then, sombody's tonab, glistening white in 
the sunlight, surrounded by others less pompous, and at 
the far edge of the mirror, the tender, sweet shoots of 
new herbage and grasses reflected their modest new 
beauty, and when I looked up, and glanced at the vision 
reflected, I fell into wondrous amazement, and knew 
not which most to admire, — the substance, or only the 
shadow. 

The undefined and inexpressible thrill of the artist as 
he looks out upon the rolling foothills in their vernal 
beauty, or upon the mountains melting in the golden 
glory of our common sunsets, is as much above the pleas- 
ure of the millionaire as he counts his gold as is the 
reality of the rippling laughter of your little child at 



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THE ART or SEEING. 16 

play to the forced guffaw of a salaried clown. It is a 
pleasure which sweetens life in poverty, lightens life in 
care; and although art is not religion, nor a substitute 
for religion, yet it is religion's noblest and most spiritual 
handmaid, inasmuch as she interprets to multitudes of 
men who are too blind to see, or too indifferent, the won- 
derful revelations of sea, and sky, and land; catching 
the sweet whisperings of the tender leaflets, and the 
music of the sea- wave on the beach; translating the 
awful splendor of the sky at eventide, when piled-up 
clouds rise above the mountain tops, — both cloud and 
mountain capped and fringed with the radiance of tinted 
light, — or when, in the lower sky, great plains of molten 
silver seem to tremble in dazzling brilliancy, until the 
flashing, throbbing, twinkling rose, and purple, and ame- 
thyst are blended into the pearly grays and tender sea- 
greens of the sun's final whispered " good night." 

And even the solemn pleasures of the night season 
she interprets, when day-dreams of imaginary wrong are 
dispelled by the host of stars which in their silent twin- 
klings remind us of the hope in the sublime allegory, 
** As one star differeth from another star in glory." 

It is my humble, delightful province to sit always at 
the feet of the Great Master in the world's landscape- 
studio, and my duty here is to reveal something of the 
glory and the teaching of that phase of beauty alone. 
Do not think that I place this branch of art above all 
others, or that I insufficiently esteem the rest. One 
artist will linger most about the modest lilies of the field, 
and make them repeat the sweetest message of the uni- 
verse, "Consider the lilies," etc.; another will translate 
the charm of a pretty waking child at sunrise, and pos- 
ing the little one before a world, will repeat again the 
everlasting utterance, "For of such is the kingdom"; 
while another must needs look out upon the general face 
of nature, remembering that first grand verdict, He "saw 
that it was good." So each in his special sphere shall be 



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16 TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 

opening blind eyes, touching silent chords, and leading 
the multitude into the inner courts of the great temple 
of beauty. 

I deem it advisable at once to define what Landscape 
Art really is, — that is, what the art of landscape-paint- 
ing really means, — and some readers may be unprepared 
to hear that it is not a mere reproduction of a given area 
of the surface of nature; it is not merely a copy of a given 
scene or view, however faithfully and truly it may be re- 
produced; if it were that only, it could not claim superi- 
ority over the mechanical art of the photographer. It is 
more than an accurate transcript of nature's surface; it 
is not compassed or expressed by the cranky methods of 
Preraphaelites or Impressionists (although the latter 
school is infinitely nearer the truth than the former), but 
it is the translation into color of the artist's emotions as 
they are invoked by the influence of the scene, as the 
great spirits of light, and wind, and moisture play upon 
it. What wizards of enchantment these are I Let but a 
solitary beam of morning's silvery light fall upon a green 
rush by the gray water's edge, and the true artist catches 
the inspiration, and with it unfolds a picture of nature's 
harmony in silver and grays, which captivates a multi- 
tude. Wind! Let but a cool breath sweep up from the 
sea at hot noontide, making the dry ripe corn rustle like 
the leaves of a forest in an Eastern October, and the neg- 
lected dead leaves of your eucalyptus to whirl in crisp 
music as in the joy of a glad resurrection, and the artist 
will need no further incentive to touch into lovable 
beauty of action the flowers and grasses and leaves of a 
commonplace "lot." And then the Moisture! What an 
immeasurable, unutterable, thing to the artist! How in- 
significant is everything else in comparison! Without it, 
the world could be done in chalk, but not in color. 

An artist practicing landscape-painting without a 
poetic appreciation of the effect of moisture I What a 
parody! How pitiable I But the artist, looking out 



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THE ART OF SEEING. 17 

upon the jagged and rugged fringe of the Sierras yonder, 
sees moiature woven into tender gossamer garments about 
their feet, and into thinnest veils of floating mists; and 
hU translation of that mountain view is not a correct 
outline of its altitude and features only, or chiefly, but 
is a revelation of the charm of its beauty, as his keen 
perception saw moving light, and soft cloud-shadows, 
and filmy, fleecy things of sky and sea play hide and seek 
among the crevices and hollows of the great mountain's 
side. It is not the subject of a picture which charms and 
captivates most, but its treatment. A little rivulet caught 
babbling among the nodding grasses and blushing violets 
of its shady bed, and dropping with only whisperings of 
its sweet music o'er a common stone, can be made, by one 
who sees and feels the thing, and who knows that in his 
palette-box he has a chord responsive to every sweet 
utterance of the rippling rill and to every enchantment 
of its flower and moss strewn pathway, a picture worthy 
of a nation's honor; while he who sees only the material, 
and has not realized the truth that in landscape art a 
shadow is more important than the substance, and a 
poem is more worthy than mechanical exactitude, may 
paint a cataract upon a mile of canvas, yet fail to touch 
a single chord or sentiment of human hearts. 

Just as the temperament, passions, and circumstances 
within and without a man play upon his features, so do 
atmosphere and its conditions play upon the face of 
nature, and no. true portrait-painter would consider a 
measured outline, with careful interlineation of observant 
marks and shadows, of a sitter the highest art. His art 
enables him to breathe the spirit of his subject on the 
canvas, and the same principle is good in landscape to 
an extent far beyond popular appreciation; and not only 
can no student ever take a step toward success in art 
who does not, at the commencement of his study, accept 
and understand' this principle, but no person can ever 
become a judge of any picture — or even ever acquire the 



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18 TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 

faculty of enjoying a good picture to the fullest extent — 
without recognizing this principle, and it is in the ex- 
pression of this poetic element of nature in landscape 
that water-color excels. It is not difficult to understand 
that a medium so delicate and pure in character shotdd 
be found the best adapted to express the tenderer and 
more subtle effects of atmosphere and color, while at the 
same time its wonderful transparency gives it a capacity 
of any required strength and force. 

Of course, all accept the above proposition in the mat- 
ter of violent agitations in nature, such as storms, both 
on sea and land, and in such plain variations of effect as 
morning and evening; but I desire to make plain to you 
far subtler things, and for the purpose (in the absence of 
actual illustrations) must rely on description. Some 
years ago, four artists of my acquaintance — all good 
landscapists, three of them men of considerable reputa- 
tion — were together in a very popular hunting-ground 
of men of the brush. At a turn of the road they came 
upon a simple cottage, with barn, stable, and other simple 
outbuildings, which appealed to them all as a good fore- 
ground subject, and, true to the sudden instinct, they 
pitched their sketching-stools on a bit of rising ground, 
and each deciding on his composition, found themselves, 
in a few minutes, removed from each other only a few 
yards, perhaps the two farthest from each other only 
fifteen yards. At the next annual exhibition of water- 
colors, the four pictures were hung in the same room, 
and although they attracted considerable attention be- 
cause of their merit, they were only recognized as being 
transcripts of the same location by a few of the public, 
because each artist had revealed in color what he felt in 
the subject most, although ha had not in the slightest 
degree falsified the subject. The cottage was on the 
fringe of a corn-field which sloped toward the west, and 
at that western boundary was the shadowed bed of a little 
stream, from which, on the opposite side, rose abruptly a 



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THE ART OF SEEING. 19 

hillock, fern-covered, and with jutting bits of gray gran- 
ite. One artist caught the play of light upon the golden 
waving corn, and wove upon his canvas a harmony of 
rich yellows, with telling chords of gray and purplish 
olive in the shadowed distance, using the front of the 
cottage only to strengthen the composition. Another 
was struck most by the mysterious shadows in that hol- 
low beyond the field, and lie subtly worked out their 
sympathetic utterances, using the corn only as a path- 
way for the eye up to and into the soft hollows of the 
thick brush and sleeping willows. The third caught the 
glinting sunlight on the little window-panes; the half- 
opened lattices with white blinds telling wonderfuHy 
against the dark shadows of the room; the gate, half- 
open, seemed really to swing upon its hinges; a strag- 
gling bit of creeping ivy which grew over the gable 
chimney-top caught the bright sunlight, and a few 
touches of orange light upon its vivid greenness made it 
almost move to the soft wind, — the whole emphasized by 
a deep shadow across the rough yard. He produced only 
the bright country homestead, — the important elements 
of the other works being here treated very simply and 
subserviently. The fourth artist sat the lowest, and he 
was moved most by the tender outlines of the semi- 
distant hillock, with its broken crevices against a sky 
trembling in all the beauty of opalescent light; making 
the cottage a strong foreground; the corn-field became 
partially blotted from his view; he united his strong fore- 
ground to the tender distance by an imaginary narrow 
pathway through the corn (the only liberty taken with 
the truth of the subject by the whole four men), and his 
composition became a totally different thing from the 
other three. The pictures naturally suggested such 
characteristic titles as — 

"The Poetry of Motion." 

" There is no Place like Home." 

"A Golden Pathway." (You see, he gave most promi- 



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20 TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 

nence to his bit of idealization, yet led the beholder to 
the point of distance which was his inspiration.) 

"The soft and silent shadows lure to love and dreams." 
Now, there is no desire in the heart of a young art 
student greater or more earnest than that of being able to 
sketch from nature. There is a fascination in the thought 
of being able to put on paper or canvas a pictorial repre- 
sentation of the things we see, particularly of the scenes 
which, through the eye, fill us with pleasure and admira- 
tion; yet how few are there among those who learn the 
principles of drawing and perspective, and who learn to 
paint from copies with more or less degree of excellence, 
who are able to sketch and color the landscape which 
they most admire, or any part of its appealing beauty; 
and it would be amusing, if it were not so painful, to 
see the young beginner engage on his first and even his 
twentieth essay. 

His first great difficulty is to decide where to begin, 
how much to put in, and after an almost sickening wan- 
dering from point to point in search of something that 
he cannot define, he either gives the matter up, and con- 
soles himself with the thought that it is not just the 
scene, after all, to make a picture of, or that his paper is 
not quite large enough to embrace the view he selected, 
or that the time of day is not favorable to begin, or that 
' he will be able to select a more suitable and an easier 
subject, he folds up his materials and awaits another op- 
portunity. He knows all about the base line, the hori- 
zontal line, the point of sight, the vanishing-point, and 
the rest of it, but they all get so mixed up in his contem- 
plation of the multitude of things he sees in that land- 
scape, that his ambitious spirit quails, and his artistic 
capacity seems smaller than he thought it to be. Many 
times the world has had to lose an artist because such 
eager, loving efforts have not been helped by a word 
of true and practical suggestion. It is not because that 
young beginner does not know the rules which should 



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THE ART OF SEEING. 21 

guide him in deciding where and how to begin his sketch, 
but he does not know how to apply them. Perhaps the 
simple illustration given under " Sketching from Nature" 
may be useful to such persons in the future, and serve to 
make their study of perspective, etc., plainer and easier. 

In helping your child to the practice of a noble char- 
acter you are not incessantly reiterating the decalogue, 
nor intoning a creed, but by a sweeter, subtler process 
show him the beauty and simplicity of nobility, honor, 
and truth; so to that eager, trembling aspirant to artistic 
fame there is a more practical method of guidance and 
help than by the eternal insistence ui)on scientific law, 
yet which must, of course, be in accord with and illus- 
trative of that severe law of linear perspective, which 
must ultimately become his easy, friendly, infallible 
guide. 

Now, a few words of advice as to how, and where, and 
when to look for revelations of beauty and of tender 
shadowings as from out of the invisible. In the con- 
stant sunshine of these Western skies it is specially need- 
ful to watch for the occasions of atmospheric changes, for 
they are fewer and more fleeting than in more humid 
climes. Each day presents the sublime panorama of 
mountain peaks, and rolling foothills, and valleys gar- 
nished with the luscious fruitage of a second Eden; but 
to-day, yesterday, and to-morrow the unwatchful ones 
will see only the same face, — the same glory, — while he 
who is wise enough to look will see that face move and 
radiate with passion and pathos, smiles and tears. The 
sea-fog comes up at eventide, and with silent finger 
touches in places the fringes of palm and the gum trees, 
and trickles its moisture into the folds of the corn stalks; 
then up in the morning betimes, and looking out east- 
ward, see Earth throwing kisses to a silvery sunrise, or 
from the pearly shadows of a cafion see that solemn sea- 
fog rise up in sparkling cloudlets, like incense ascending 
to wreathe itself about the bright Shekinah. Or if, at 



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22 TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 

eventide, before the sun lies down upon the glittering 
liquid couch of yon Pacific, you have perceived a fog 
dispersed out seaward, or have discerned some broken 
clouds in the north and northwestern sky, then look for 
the sure transformation that will follow, when color 
rampant will sometimes overawe the soul, at other times 
will whisper cadences of heavenly lullabies to troubled 
minds. 

But not only at sweet-smiling morn, or at the poetic 
time of evening's blushes, shall the watcher be rewarded. 
No I no I At times there is a sleepy, dreamy haze 
about the mountain crests and chasms which must be 
reproduced on canvas by grays of poetic tenderness and 
purity; at other times they clothe themselves in deep- 
toned vaporings of blue, or bluish purples, or neutral 
bluishness, and seem to stand so near that you can fancy 
you hear their echoes of your voice; while here, by the 
silvery beach, the artist looks not upon an eternal mo- 
notony of tumbling waters, but ever and anon he catches 
in the liquid mass a passage of unusual color, a deepened 
shadow in the hollow of the swell, an opalescent sparkle 
of a bit of wind-swept foam, an emerald green behind the 
curve of a breaking wave, and in the receding snowy 
little foamlets at his feet he sees a frolic and hears a 
laughter like the charm of little children at their play. 

The world is very beautiful. To all of us, the Great 
Spirit of Beauty passes at times very near, and we see 
and feel the sweep of her ethereal garments; but to those 
only who look for the vision, and who seek to understand 
her message, does she vouchsafe her greatest, her sweetest, 
witchery and revealment. In all ages — everywhere — the 
love and cultivation of art has sweetened and uplifted 
the generations of men; but it was reserved for the nine- 
teenth century to prove — and proved it has — that land- 
scape art reveals most of the glory of Ood, and has the 
noblest mission in the interpretation of the infinite mes- 
sage of creation. 



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THE ART OF SEEING. 23 

These are no common platitudes; ask the youngest 
student of the art if his first lessons have not opened his 
eyes to see daily visions to which he was blind before, and 
to receive pleasures from the perusal of the world's great 
poet-painters of which he had not conceived the possi- 
bility. 

Whether you cultivate the art and power of making 
pictorial memoranda of the things you see and love, or 
not, do this, at least : try to discern the variety of hue 
and color of light, half-lights, and poetic shadows in 
which the world is clad ; wait not for the rampant glory 
of a crimson sunset, or the quiet beauty of a new crea- 
tion, as in the morning (each morning) God speaks a 
new day, "Let there be light!" but from your cottage 
porch see revelry of silent shadows as the mid-day breeze 
sweeps in among your garden trees, and watch the 
countless changes of color in the restless radiance of the 
breaking waves. See how dancing sunlight blots out 
the green upon your corn-leaves and makes them glitter 
with the burnished whiteness of a Damascus blade, and 
the thick stalks of the dead mustard-brush glitter 
'mid its branch tracery, like the sheen of silver rods. 
Be not content to count the golden fruitage of your 
orange trees, nor rest quite satisfied with the discernment 
of their ripening beauty, but look into the deep, dark 
shadows of the leafy hollows, and see how wondrously 
the juicy greens are multiplied by the reflected lights. 
Everywhere try to discern the half-hidden, passages of 
beauty, and listen ever to the whisperings of the great 
Teacher's message; so shall your hearts throb with a 
purer joy, your understandings be quickened, your an- 
ticipations be intensified, of the glory which "eye hath 
not seen, nor ear heard." 

And now a final word directly upon the method of 
viewing Art. (Of course, the scope of my remarks is 
limited in this special handbook to landscape art, or that 
branch particularly.) 



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24 TALKS IN BIY STUDIO. 

I repeat that it is a degradation of the conception of 
art to hold that the essence of art is imitation. It is the 
function of the artist to create. It is the representation 
of the ideal under the forms of the actual; of the 
spiritual within the material. This must be acknowl- 
edged and felt by every one who would see the artist's 
meaning in his work. 

In first looking at a picture, view it as a whole, and 
from a distance of several times its own length, where 
possible. You may afterwards look into it minutely, 
for purposes of criticism or of education, but first try to 
discern the main character of the picture. It is true, 
you may not discover any distinctive character in it, for 
the reason that it has none, but let us suppose that it 
has, that it is the work of a competent and conscientious 
poet of color, and that in it there lurks a sentiment of 
that poet's soul. And let me here ask you to assent to 
this philosophy without reserve and to enforce your 
assent by historic proof. In a man's works we can 
recognize the man. Take, for instance, such examples 
as Fra Angelico, who painted angel-faces and sweet 
forms of perfect purity in such a way as to perpetuate 
their chaste dreams through generations of men, because 
he lived a life of transparent simplicity and truth; while 
Salvator Rosa painted strong canvases of revolting 
ghastliness and depression, because he was defiled by 
malignant passion, and lived a boisterous revel life with 
the bandits and brigands of Abruzzi. 

This spirit and life of the man in his work is what 
should be seen, and the capacity for such discernment 
should be first eagerly cultivated; by this means the 
color-utterances of their respective canvases will have 
special meanings, and their messages will, by their 
poetry and music, convey sweet understanding. The 
religious aim and perfect artistic power of Giovanni 
Bellini, the solemn and severe spirit of Michael Angelo, 
the sweet joyousness of Raphael, the luxurious high- 



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THE ART OF SEEING. 25 

toned temperament of Rubens, and the marvelous com- 
prehensiveness of the culture of Sir Frederick Leighton, 
are the first things exhibited to connoisseurs by their 
respective works. 

It may be urged that opportunities for the study of 
such high examples are few and distant; let this be 
granted, yet the principle remains, and in your oppor- 
tunities there shall be found examples of spirit and life 
behind paint and manner, and a "still, small voice" of 
enchanting solace and enjoyment shall speak to you 
from out the canvases of many neglected geniuses. 

It will be well always to remember that it is the pre- 
eminent duty and aim of all true artists to reveal to men 
the half-hidden beauty and glory of the universe; but 
the multitude too often disdains their efforts, and denies 
their power, until they pass into the greater and sublimer 
glory of the unseen. David Cox was humbled to the 
painting of a sign-post for his daily bread, and only after 
his death could the blind host of boasted connoisseurs see 
wind and moving vapors, with wonderful expansiveness 
of feathery moorlands and mottled skies, in the bits of 
rapid water-colors which now they buy with heavy 
checks; and " Millet, from his modest cottage, did noble 
work, and preached to France for years, under the dis- 
piriting silence and contempt of his country, the doctrine 
of the true intrinsic grandeur of manhood and the 
sanctity of toil," but when the " silver cord was loosed " 
and the deft fingers silent, the mob of educated art 
patrons flung useless roses on his tomb, and vouchsafed 
their vulgar honor of his worth by giving a fortune for 
The Angelua to a stranger who probably had never con- 
tributed a cent to the great artist's toil. 



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CHAPTER 11. 

FACTS AND FANCIES ABOUT ART. 

Landscape Art. 

I WOULD almost claim for landscape art a proud pre- 
eminence, for several reasons; the first being that it 
reflects most of the glory of God, and again, it is always 
chaste, and pure, and elevating. '* Landscape, in its most 
naked simplicity, can never be lewd or immodest." The 
nude CAN be made revolting; landscape, never! While, 
in every other realm of art-creation and its utterance, 
realism can become something worse than vulgar, in this 
there is only one spirit, one message. It is the spirit of 
light moving among the trees of the garden. 

It was upon outline, form, the human figure, that the 
great artists of the past devoted their genius and achieved 
their immortality. And I would direct your attention 
to the fact — not always appreciated — that to-day no 
artist hand is cunning enough in this wide world to 
outvie the perfect conceptions of the old Grecian sculp- 
tors, such as have outlived the long centuries; and that 
the most ambitious students of art in this vaunted nine- 
teenth century, the world over, are sitting at the feet of 
artists dead for two thousand years, and are faithfully 
copying the clear lines and proportions of the human 
form laid down for them on the banks of the Mediter- 
ranean centuries before Christ pointed men to the lilies 
and the corn-fields. 

The universal consensus of cultivated people is, that in 
beauty of outline, in matchless expression, in absolute 
perfection of delineation, the art of the ancient Greeks 
stands unapproachable, as yet, in the history of the 
world. But no landscai)e had been pictured, lusterful 
with the radiance of light and tuneful with the melody of 

26 



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FACTS AND FANCIES ABOUT ART. 27 

motion. The Roman artists ministered to the sensuous 
senses of a later people with gorgeous t)alette and glowing 
hues; Rubens, Titian, and Raphael made the after cen- 
turies radiant with their brilliant devices of color and 
the poetic composition of their groups: but yet no land- 
scape. And for many centuries after the Christian era 
the world's art was unequal to the task of painting either 
the majesty of a mountain, the awful power of a sea-wave, 
or the checkered lights and shadows of a moving forest. 

Color in Dress. 

There came into my studio to-day a perfect vision of 
beauty, a very dream of fair womanhood, radiant with 
the sweetness of health, and a voice like the music of 
silver chords ; but, oh I what a spasm of murderous 
color, — not vulgarly lovd, but with silent profanity out- 
raging every canon of taste, and despoiling this goddess 
of exquisite charm. Why will not the builders of dresses 
and bead-gear acquire the knowledge of contrasts in 
delicate timings and shadings ? And why will culture 
and wealth perpetuate spasms and colic in color? 

Now, if I were a sweet little blonde, I would dictate to 
my milliner thus, and my dressmaker thus: "I shall 
have a hlacJc bonnet this time, M'selle, with a tip of the 
softest white ostrich, and just one or two flowers of red 
shaded deep in their hollows; not pink, M'selle, because, 
you see, I have just a wee bit of color.'' Or, "A light- 
blue bonnet this time, M'selle, — very light, if you please, 
like that bit of sky yonder, below that delicate light 
cloud; and put in a few flowers of white, but be sure not 
to mix them with pink or with violet." Or, "A green 
bonnet this time, for a change; for, you see, I have been 
in the country, and have grown quite rosy; and trim it 
with pink flowers, if you please, not red." 

Again, if I were a pretty brunette (or homely), I 'd 
say: "No 1 not that, thank you I it has too much blue in 
it; nor that, for I cannot look well in so much violet; 



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28 TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 

but this cream-yellow is just what I need, particularly as 
the front hair is now so heavily shown. And just trim it 
quite loosely with ribbons, not flowers, of violet or blue." 

Or, "JVo, I prefer this broken-orange hat. I know it 
suits a brunette. And trim it with ribbons and flowers 
of a soft, quiet blue, which have no glisten or glinting 
upon them, but the colors quite dead." 

And with my gown I 'd be just as exacting, and all, of 
course, should be matched with the bonnet, and the bon- 
net to it. This is an element of woman's rights I heartily 
advocate, and would have them renounce a thousand 
others to master this. 

Practice of Color. 

I think it can be abundantly proved that too long 
delay in painting from nature, while the whole attention 
is confined to severe study in perspective, the antique, 
and modeling, produces academicians instead of artists; 
frequently blots out the inner conceptions and ideals 
which would have expressed some of nature's most poetic 
inspirations. 

The wondrous charms of nature are certainly designed 
to convey thoughts, and ideas, and poetic sentiments to 
the human mind, far beyond those of the mere sense, and 
the student is not likely to make less progress in the 
mechanical department of his study because he at the 
same time is cultivating the capacity and aptitude of 
giving expression to the higher elements of truth and 
beauty. 

While it is incumbent upon us to adopt the best-known 
rules and methods for the guidance of students in art 
generally, we are equally bound to admit that conven- 
tional methods are not always to be preferred. Were 
that the case, originality would suffer, and genius fre- 
quently be smothered. Indeed, America would suffer 
immeasurably, for her artists could not study the models 
adopted in the ^European schools, and would be denied 



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FACTS AND PANCIB8 ABOUT ART. 29 

the possibility which I claim for her, — of establishing a 

new school, as original and as true as that of the Greek 

or the Dutch. 

Character. 

A more incorrect statement was never uttered than 
that which is too generally believed, that the life of the 
artist is proverbially marked by passion, vice, and loose 
morals. It is not to be wondered at, that men absorbed 
entirely by the charms of their imagination should often 
throw aside the prejudices, and some of the rules, which 
govern the lives of other men; but, search through the 
lives of those who really deserve the name of artists, and 
you will find they are mostly worthy men — not scorning 
religion, although maybe holding rather contemptuously 
the rigid formulas of theology, but in their natures and 
their lives cherishing and fostering the fruits of patience, 
long-suffering, brotherly kindness, and charity. Tell me, 
who most (beyond their mothers) influence the hearts of 
your darlings in the prattling time of their nursery 
education, and touch their sensitive impulses to love 
things beautiful, and guide their instincts toward kindly 
treatment of the dumb creation? Why, the artist, whose 
pencil, touched by the innocent sentiments of childhood, 
designed the pictures of brutes, and birds, and flowers, 
which are the gospel of the babes. Who first leads the 
youth into the restful places of the poets, and helps him 
easiest to realize the music of their song and the deep 
wisdom of their rhythmic utterance? Why, the artist, 
whose deft pencil pictures the enchanting bits of sleepy 
hollows, and laughing hillsides, and babbling rivulets, 
and nodding daffodils, thus making the world to the 
little ones appear "a thing of beauty, a joy forever." 

Romance in Nature. 
In nature, as in life, are woven facts and fancies; truth 
and fiction; action and repose; love and fear; the "still, 
small voice," and the hurricane of sound; the love-songs 



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30 TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 

of nestling birds and the death-dirges of the solemn deep; 
the laughing, dancing frolic of the wild flowers, and the 
somber, silent shadows of the primeval forests, — all, in 
their respective ways, appealing to human hearts. 

In nature, as in life, are smiles and tears; sweet 
cadencies of song and wail of angry element; romance of 
light and shadow, of form and vapor; stories and pictures 
of witching mirages, as real as many tales of human love; 
great dramas, painted in lurid colors on western skies; 
and palaces of such ethereal splendor and enchantment 
as Arabian Nights ne'er conceived, piled up against the 
skies in snowy purity of pinnacle, dome, and minaret, 
peopled with ghosts and skeletons of the hoary past, and 
echoing stories more profound and thrilling than pen can 
translate. 

Sir Walter Scott. 

What a flood of understanding is thrown upon the 
sweet, simple, constant poetic utterances of Sir Walter 
Scott, when we learn that his invitations to close friends 
at Abbotsford were couched thus: "The pleasure of your 
company is invited for tea and sunset." . When the labor 
of his day was ended, and he sought to intensify the joy 
and peace of rest by the companionship of friends, he 
knew that the pleasant babble of congenial friends could 
be hushed into a perfect ecstasy of intellectual expression 
and enjoyment by the shifting splendors of declining day. 

Pacific Orove and Del Monte, 
Such inspirations as I have just been describing may be 
enjoyed almost anywhere, but there are places where it is 
even hard to escape them, and of such places Pacific Grove 
is queen. Peaceful as the consecrated cloisters of an abbey, 
glittering with a more delicate sheen of liquidity than the 
garden slopes of a Venetian palace, odorous with health- 
giving pine incense, fringed with a border of exquisite 
beauty, — being an interlaced pattern of rock-work and 
herbage, — with vistas of sand-dunes and cypress within 



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FACTS AND FANCIES ABOUT ART. 31 

easy stroll of her gates, she oSers a more perfect repose, 
associated with the tonic of social and intellectual vitality, 
than any other resort on our Coast. And again, does not 
Del Monte belong to the Grove? Either that, or the Grove 
to Del Monte; and where or what will you challenge 
against it .^ A palace of luxurious appointments equal- 
ing in charm the dream of Claude Melnotte, half-hidden 
by cypress, pine, beech, and magnolia, which now, in the 
gathering gloom of the evening, look solemn and somber 
as they cast their long shadows across the serpentine 
pathways, and dappling the velvety lawns with lines and 
patches of purple. 

Here and there are rustic, fantastic lounges for lovers, 
all framed by interlaced tendrils and branches of vine- 
creepers, and only disclosed at appropriate comers, or 
peeps 'tween the bending branches of oak trees. To the 
right, a road shaded by pines leads to the fringe of the 
bay, whose waters are like opal and turquoise in solution. 
Below the lines and clumps of young foliage, and lapped 
by the whispering wavelets, sleeps the old-fashioned town, 
Monterey. 

The shadows are deepening, and one expects to hear 
solemn-faced owls hoot to each other from out of their 
secret corners. The deep crimson-red blossoms, which here 
and there sparkle 'gainst the dark and polished magnolias, 
look like fire-flies stopped on the wing, and the clusters of 
violets which embroider the grasses are turning their faces 
to sleep. A charming effect is produced by creeping and 
clambering wood-vines, which, catching at each drooping 
bough, climb stealthily upwards, anxious (like all weaker 
natures) to hang on something sturdy. 

Through their intertwined tendrils, in places, there 
glitter the crimson and purple of the western sky. 
Fringing the coast to the southward are the grand, old, 
fantastic, and velvet-clad cypress, with the half-ruined 
Mission of Carmel, — the whole presenting, in one after- 



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32 TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 

noon, if needs be, but better if given a year, an antidote 
to every ill that flesh or mind is heir to. 

Love of Nature. 

Of course, by this time, you must have perceived that 
I consider ihQ fundamental basis of all art to be an un- 
quenchable love and an untiring study of nature. No 
other genius than one gifted with such a love and devo- 
tion could ever convey from his brain to his brush, and 
by his brush to the common multitude, such emotions as 
those pictures convey. It is true that many pictures are 
made by labor and studious technique which are pro- 
nounced good, and accepted as excellent in their detail 
and pleasing color-arrangements; but I am compelled to 
insist that their excellence is purely academic. 

You will admire, of course, the lustrous, liquid eyes of 
her to whom you 've pledged your life, and write long, 
sickly sonnets to them, whether blue or brown; but only 
when they speak to you the spirit-song of love, and from 
their silent depths you hear the utterance of her heart, 
do you perceive the highest beauty in them. So 'tis 
with nature and her devotees. To casual eyes, or even 
interested ones, she seems a pretty dame with whom a 
gay flirtation may be had on holidays, and to whose 
general charm they pay the tribute of conventional praise; 
but lovers true there are, who deeper look into her eyes, 
and reverently share her smiles and tears; and who, in 
turn, receive her secret confidence, and learn the subtle 
meaning of her winsomeness, and all the pathos of her 
changing moods; who learn the songs she sings to sweet- 
tongued poets, and the lullabies she plays at eventide to 
nestling birds; who love her when, in angry mood, she 
flings great, foamy crests upon the sands, or makes the 
forests tremble with the shock of rushing wind; who 
linger lovingly about her path at all times and seasons, 
and never cease to trace upon their canvases the witching 
modulations of her form and flushes. 'T is in such art as 



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PACTS AND FANCIES ABOUT ART. 33 

this that genius flashes, — an art which knows no school 
and claims no fatherland. 

Landscape and Seascape. 
Of course, the term "landscape" embraces the sea, 
which, if painted alone, should, with absolute correct- 
ness, be called a "seascape." I embrace in the term 
every inanimate vision under the sky; and with it, that 
ethereal nothing called "sky," with the moisture and 
mists it holds in changeful, bewildering motion. I em- 
brace the solemn shadows of night, when tangible things 
have no outline, and only the stars are reflected in still 
pools of water. I embrace the cold rain, which dances 
in bubbles fantastic, and blots out, as it falls, the trees and 
the hills it enriches. I embrace the chilly, great fog- 
banks, which rise in thick masses out seaward, and roll 
in tumbling battalions o'er the hills of the coast-line; 
which <irown the bass roars of the sea-lions, and, passing 
o'er city and bay, finally trickle their moisture into chan- 
nels prepared to receive it, in the grass-blade and stalks 
of the wild flower. I embrace every phase of creation not 
instinct with animal life; for this great faculty of art can 
summon forth upon the canvas the spirits of all things. 
Solemnity, silence, and music can be as surely portrayed 
as a rock, or an oak, or a mountain. 

Shadows, 
Study shadows, and see how much they tell of radi- 
ances overlooked and contemptuously neglected. No 
unimportant things are shadows in a landscape. With- 
out them, art could not exist, and nature would be a 
sickening, remorseless monotony. They stand behind the 
grass-blades, setting off the brilliance of their emerald 
beauty; they hide themselves between the fragrant petals 
of your favorite rose, giving richness and softness to the 
color's blush; they respond to your bidding on your cot- 
tage porch, where, for the very purpose, you have twined 



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34 TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 

the eglantine and smilax, and in their dappled softness 
you dream dreams and read tales of love. 

Shadows! They are the grandest things about us. 
Marching in the heavens in cloud-battalions, sweeping 
over golden corn-fields, or darkening the face of your 
great fir forests; sleeping beneath the mirror-surface of a 
pool, or peeping for an instant from the hollow of a burst- 
ing sea-wave; guarding your tired eyeball with the tender 
lid, or offering their repose to you from the feet of a great 
rock in a weary land, — shadows deserve your study and 
profound esteem. And remember it is only in the shadow 
of the rain-cloud that we discern the matchless arc of 
beauty in the rainbow; and it is only through the final 
shadow of the valley that we emerge into the radiance of 
eternal light. 

Impressionism, 

Yes I Impressionism is a worthy phase of art. A true 
impressionistic picture is the work of genius actuated by 
inspiration. But what an epidemic of fraud and non- 
sense has the word occasioned in some places during 
recent years. The greatest and grandest landscape- 
paintings of all time were and are, in more or less degree, 
impressionist pictures; but how absurd to attach the 
word to things which indicate no impression at all, or 
because no one can discern in them anything natural or 
understandable 1 The glory of a dissolving sunset, for 
instance, must always have been an impressionist picture, 
for it could not possibly have been painted at the time, 
so evanescent are the changing revelations of the sky; so, 
you see, "impressionism" in painting existed as a factor 
— an important factor — in art long before the word be- 
came hackneyed, and useful on the lips of frauds to bam- 
boozle fools. 



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CHAPTER III. 

PICTURES. 

You ask, Is there a more beautiful spot anywhere than 
this? Let me answer it by a general statement. There 
is beauty everywhere, and it reveals itself always to those 
who look for it, but only to those; and it requires not ex- 
tensive travel, nor measured altitudes, nor silvery lakes, 
to see and feel the romance, the poetry, or the pathos of 
nature. Wherever a silvery beech whispers its music or 
an oak casts its deep shadow; wherever a cottage porch 
is crowned with its smilax, or honeysuckle, or a hedgerow 
is blushing wilh modest spring blossom; wherever a 
water-lily kisses its mirror, or a sprig of wild heather dis- 
plays its darkening purple; wherever a corn-field bends 
low to the reaper, or the matchless seed-dome of the 
dandelion displays its architectural glory; wherever a 
meadow is sweetened by the dewdrops of morning, or a 
clump of still trees is found hiding the shadows of sunset, 
— in them all is the Spirit of Beauty; and he is the 
happiest man who woos her subtle bewitchment. 

I have just returned from a sketching tour in old Eng- 
land, and in one of its narrow corners, where there are 
neither forests nor lakes, nor mountains, but only 
stretches of moorland, and great masses of gray granite, 
I have seen visions of loveliness not surpassed in the 
taller continents of the world. I have seen sunlight 
weave cords of golden threads on old, thatched cottage 
roofs, and paint dreamy purple shadows in their eaves. 
I have seen the August sunbeams convert the white- 
washed walls of a laborer's cot into a symphony of color, 
and burnishing the blossoms in its humble garden, trans- 
form its poverty into the matchless thing called "Home, 
sweet home." I have seen the simple mountain stream 
from the gray " tors," dancing westward o'er its pebbly 

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36 TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 

bed, reflect the glory of an evening sky until it seemed a 
thread of liquid crimson bespangled with countless beads 
of fiery amber as the lights were broken on its tiny 
splashes 'gainst the rocks. I have seen a quiet veil of 
cloud hang o'er the whole western sky at eventide, as 
though to enforce the sublime assertion, "It is the glory 
of God to conceal a thing," and then a little rift, no 
larger than a human hand, has opened and revealed a 
fire more brilliant than the sapphire, — most startling in 
its effect, and making it just possible to believe that 
behind that veil there was a glory too superb for mortal 
eye. I have seen silvery mists play hide and seek among 
the giant rocks of old Cams until with the morning's 
resurrection they floated upwards like sweet incense. 
A thousand things about us every day are full of beauty; 
and dear old England, with its changeful seasons, and its 
humid atmosphere, producing cadences of color in lichen, 
moss, and leafage, and weaving songs of suggestive poetic 
tenderness in wood and valley, is, and must ever be, the 
home of the poet and the painter — the birthplace and the 
temple of landscape-painters. 

It is commonly supposed that most people are alive to 
scenes of natural beauty and phenomena; but observa- 
tion disproves this theory, and demonstrates the fact, 
that, while multitudes are ever ready to enjoy the 
unavoidable beauty of their environments, very few 
cultivate the faculty for seeing the more subtle, and 
therefore the more delightful, phases of beauty and en- 
chantment. I was much struck with this fact the other 
day. I went to look out upon the bay from the heights 
overlooking the Presidio. The day was exceedingly 
glorious, and a stiff breeze was sent to help the living 
white-sail yachts to enjoy their short regatta. 

About us, here and there, were groups of pleasure- 
takers, like ourselves, and constantly each other over- 
heard remarks not uttered confidentially. The breeze 
had touched the water in the narrow channel by the 



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PICTURES. 37 

fort, and, like a pouting child at being chidden, it spent 
its humorous anger on the quay, and, by dashing foam 
against the rocks, looked quite white with passion. The 
white-winged yachts just came so far to see the frolic, 
and then, as if in laughter at the sight, turned sharply 
round the flag-ship, and shot before the wind like snowy 
pigeons, eager to pass the winning-post at home, and 
hear the loud hurrah of victory. A tug with belching 
smoke, enough to mark the progress of a nation's fleet, 
took a trim member of our merchantmen toward and 
through the Golden Gate. Before the stern of the trim 
craft was entirely hidden, dark shadows lengthened 
across the opposite headlands and crept down the sides 
until they seemed to huddle together at the edge of the 
water, and the water turned into a semi-green color as if 
with fright. Then up high into the sky were seen little 
patches of color, like messengers hurrying eastwards, and 
brighter they grew for moments, and after them fol- 
lowed great arrows of delicate purple, as if in pursuit of 
the flecks of transparent amber. All the while the cliffs 
became darker, except on the top, which sparkled and 
reddened like copper reflecting the sunlight. The fort 
looked black as a demon, as the sky for a moment was 
flushed with deepening purple; and as the glory had 
ended, I turned to the eastwards, where glowworms were 
stuck upon poles, and folly, and fashion, and greed were 
huddling together for pleasure and gain. I could not 
help wondering how many there were of this great city's 
multitude who had accepted that message of the Eternal. 
And why had they not? Because — chiefly because — 
they had never allowed their natures to be touched by 
the influence of art, and had always remained content to 
see simply what they could not help seeing; and the 
acme of their appreciation is well expressed in the con- 
ventional shriek, "0, lovely I" when God thrusts a vision 
of palpitating, throbbing sky-glory before their eyes. 
I once saw a picture, in oil, by one Lawson, of a fog. 



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38 TALKS IN MY STUDIO. 

Now, there are several varieties of fog. The proverbial 
London November fog, made famous by Hood in his 
poem; a dark-colored dry fog, which I 'd warrant as a 
kill-or-cure remedy for catarrh; a fog in which men lose 
their way in the streets at mid -day, and light the gas in 
their houses to discover their victuals at table; the fog 
one can cut into slices with cheese-knives, or as an 
American critic once said, "one can roll into tangible 
lumps, like a snowball." There are fogs known in this 
state as sea-fogs, which are oftenest seen in the sections 
boomed by estate-men as the frostless and fogless belts. 
Then there are fogs better known as Scotch mists, — 
things mysteriously wet without having the appearance 
of water, — and which travel uncommonly fast without 
the assistance of wind; which seem to wet one from the 
inside, for one becomes conscious of being wet to the 
skin before the outer garments give token of drenching; 
but this fog is the orthodox fog of all times and all 
places, — motionless, clammy, and spectral, — for all 
things seen in it are shadowy, silent, and shapeless. 
*' Through it you hear footsteps of shadowy, ghost-like 
walkers, and as they approach you, they seem to be fog 
just turning to darkening lumps, then disappear in the 
mist like the dissolving view of a lantern." 

This is the fog which the artist has placed in a frame, 
and you see neither canvas nor paint, but stand back 
and peer into the mystery with sensations the same as 
you 'd have if you looked through your dining-room 
window upon the actual fog-laden scene. As you look, 
your growing perception discerns a slight motion, for 
the painter had worked out his study from a window 
overlooking a harbor, and the motion is that of a break- 
ing wave 'gainst the sea-wall, the foam just brightening 
the mist, as though a light from a rift in a cloud had 
fallen there; then, swaying on the water with lappy and 
clammy liquidity, you make out the shadowy shape of a 
boat, but fail to discover whether its stem or its stern is 
against you, — yet 'tis a boat, exactly as fog would re- 



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PICTURES. 39 

veal it. A picture of nothing ! yet full of seductive sug- 
gestiveness and of metaphysical, misty obscurity. 

For a moment this picture of fog may not strike you 
as possessing a poetic sentiment; but may it not be 
compared with Byron's Darkness f They both rely on 
the evocation of human sentiment, without visible or 
tangible subject, and in this they equally display the 
essence of poetry. These two examples of wind and fog 
were selected, not because they were the highest and best 
examples of poetic expression, but because they con- 
tained so little to appeal for help to the senses^ and illus- 
trate most forcibly the faculty of the painter to convey 
sentiment alone. 

While my chief purpose and pleasure is to lead your 
observation to the common things in nature, and help 
you to see in them the beauty of color and form which 
the artist sees, and so incidentally help you to a critical 
observation of the artist's work, yet I would not refrain 
from presenting to you a picture which I remember with 
a vividness exceptional, — a scene I witnessed in Puget 
Sound, on the Pacific, in the summer of 1892, when, 
among more than a hundred fellow-passengers, the fol- 
lowing picture scarcely evoked admiration from a dozen. 
I sat on the deck as the day declined, and the sun played 
some wonderful tricks with the clouds and the mists, 
which were moving with silence and fairy-like witchery 
over the waters and forests of this lovely sound. By my 
side was one with a voice sweetly tremulous with age 
and emotion, and a face full seventy years old, with 
scarcely a wrinkle upon it, beaming with the luster of 
health and the outshining of a beautiful soul, and 
crowned with the matchless halo of silvery white hair. 
We were speaking of the mysteries of life, of the heart, 
and of thought, and I can but love her for that which she 
said, making quite understandable things which I had 
many times looked into with wonder and no satisfaction. 
Around us trembled the water in countless ripples or 
motions, a dreamy liquidity full of prismatic color. 



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40 TxVLKS IN BIY STUDIO. 

Again and again the sun would burst through the great, 
soft, purple clouds which hung o'er the western horizon, 
and the sea would flash into lines of silver and gold too 
dazzlingly bright for the eye to gaze upon. At length 
the whole cloud was sundered by the shafts of glory be- 
hind it, and dispressed itself quickly in plumes and ban- 
ners of color, mostly purple, with fringes of burnished 
sapphire. 'Gainst that sky stood the tops of the pine 
trees as they grew upon the islands or hills of the sound, 
which stood like the ancestral hills of an ancient world, 
whilst their feet were enshrouded in mists which were 
semi-transparent, and revealed on occasions the tender 
rose-flush of the opal. Turning our face to the city was 
to witness a great transformation, and the soul, in a mo- 
ment, was hushed into somber and solemn reflections, 
for the sudden great change from the rampant glory out 
westward, to the shadows and deepening grays (although 
purplish) of the city is for the moment very depressing. 
But look out yonder towards the south or southeast, and 
tell me what is the vision. A mountain, you call it. It 
bears no resemblance to earth; nor can it be the " sky," 
as men measure words in earth's language; it must be a 
mirage, or a far-away vision of the palace of the King, 
not made with hands. Lookl see how the little cloud, 
kissing its top, is changed from a cloud into an angel of 
light, then is lost in the azure eternal. Did snow ever 
look so enchanting? 'T is not white, such as painters 
translate it, nor cold, such as poets declare it, but a 
great, soft cloud of rose-colored incense, or a measureless 
mass of sea-foam churned from the breath of the coral; a 
mountain of dreamland, woven by the subtle shuttle of 
nature from dewdrops and rain-cloud, and tinted with 
colors distilled from ages of rainbows, — a vision which 
is only revealed on occasions, because it so nearly ap- 
proaches the glory which "eye hath not seen," — a thing so 
ethereal and glorious that the language of earth cannot fix 
it a name, for some would call it Tacoma, while others, 
with equal devotion, insist upon calling it Mount Rainier. 



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PART II 

A PLAIN GUIDE TO WATEE-COLOR PAINTING 
AND SKETCHING FKOM NATURE 



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PART II. 

A PLAIN GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING 
AND SKETCHING FROM NATURE. 



CHAPTER I. 

A PEW GENERAL REMARKS, WITH TABLE OP HARMONY OP 

COLORS. 

In landscape-painting, the artist studies the reality of 
the model in each of the elements that compose it ; but 
he idealizes the real by making it express some sentiment 
of the human, soul. The proof that faithfulness of imita- 
tion would not alone suiBBce is, that if the instrument of 
the photographer could seize colors as it does forms, it 
would give us a certain view of a certain country, but it 
would not produce the work of art which is a landscape- 
painting. In order to achieve this, the painter, master of 
reality, enlightens it with his eyes, transfigures it accord- 
ing to his heart, and makes it utter, so to speak, what is 
not in it, — sentiment and thought. 

COLORS. 

In reality, there are only three original or primary 
colors: yellow, red, Sind blue; and f/iree composite or binary 
colors: orange, green, and violet. White light containing 
the three primary colors, each of which serves as the 
"complement" of the two others, in order to form the 
" equivalent " of white light. Each has therefore been 
called complementary in respect to the binary color 
corresponding to it. Thus, blue is the complementary of 
orange, because orange is composed of yellow and red, and 
blue would make white light. For the same reason, 
yellow is the complementary of violet, and red the com- 
plementary of green. In return, each of these mixed 

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44 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

colors is the complementary of that primary color which 
does not enter into its composition. Therefore, orange is 
the complementary of blv^, 

A remarkable property of colors, which it is very im- 
portant to know, and which should always be remembered 
in using them in furniture or dress, as well as in painting, 
is that which regulates the well-known law of the ** simul- 
taneous contrast of colors." It may be expressed thus: 
Complementary colors are mutually heightened when placed 
in juxtaposition. 

Red, for example, put by the side of green, appears still 
redder; orange deepens blue; violet brightens yellow, etc. 

Another law, not less curious, is this, — an especially 
important one in painting, — Every color lightly reflects 
its complementary on the space surrounding itself. 

For example, a red circle is surrounded with a light 
green aureola; an orange circle with a blue, etc. This 
was observed by Veronese and Rubens long before the 
science of to-day had discovered the law, — when they 
carefully covered with a violet tint the shadows of their 
yellows. 

TABLE OF HARMONY OF COLORS. 

A Useful Table of Reference in Painting Landscape and 
Draperies, and for all Decorative Purposes, 
Scarlet with blue or green. 
Gold or yellow with blue or violet. 
Violet with light green or yellow. , 

Blue with yellow or red. 
Carmine with green or orange. 
Brown with blue or red. 
Neutral tint with red or yellow. 
Rose with light blue or yellow. 
Orange with violet or blue. 
Blue-gray with buff or pink. 
Olive-green with red or orange. 
Flesh with blue or dark green. 
Dark green with crimson or orange. 
Light green with rose or violet. 



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CHAPTER II. 

AN EXPLANATION OP SOME TERMS USED IN PAINTING. 

Aerial Perspective. — See Perspective. 

Antiqv^e, — This term is applied to the paintings and 
sculptures which were made at that period when the arts 
were in their greatest perfection among the ancient Greeks 
and Romans. But it is generally used for statues, basso- 
relievos, medals, intaglios, or engraved stones. It has 
been doubted whether the finest works of antiquity have 
come down to us, but the principal of those which have 
been the guide of the most distinguished artists are the 
Apollo Belvedere, the Laocoon, the AntinoUs, the Torso, 
the Gladiator, the Venus of Medici, the Venus of Milo. 
The Elgin Marbles in the British Museum form a treasury 
of knowledge of the antique school. A profound study of 
the antique was the source from which the greatest artists 
of modern times, as Michael Angelo and Raphael, drew 
the perfection which has immortalized their names. 

Beauty, Ideal, — This term is made use of to express 
that degree of perfection in form which does not actually 
exist in nature, but only in the creative fancy of the artist. 
" It is this intellectual dignity," says Reynolds, " that en- 
nobles the painter's art; that lays a line between him and 
the mere mechanic; and produces those great effects in 
an instant, which eloquence and poetry are scarcely able 
to attain." 

Breadth. — This term, as applied to a picture, denotes 
grandeur of expression or distribution, as opposed to con- 
traction and meanness. Breadth is usually indicative of 
a master, as the want of it almost always accompanies 
the performance of an indifferent artist. When the lights 

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46 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

in a picture are so arranged that they seem to be in masses^ 
and the darks are massed to support them, so that the 
attention of the spectator is powerfully arrested, we have 
what is called breadth of effect^ or breadth of light and 
shade. Breadth conveys the idea of greatness. Gorreggio 
is perhaps the master in whose works breadth appears 
pre-eminently conspicuous. 

Carnations are the flesh-tints in a picture. 

Cartoon (from the Italian cartone^ pasteboard). — Hence 
the word came to be applied to the drawings or colored 
designs on paper intended to be transferred to the walls 
in fresco-painting or wrought in tapestry. 

Chalky is that cold or unpleasant effect which arises 
from an injudicious combination of colors that do not 
agree well together. Thus white mixed with vermilion, 
without being tempered with the ochers or burnt sienna, 
will appear crude and chalky. 

ChiarO'Oscuro (Italian), light and shade. This term 
refers to the general distribution of lights and shadows in 
a picture, and their just degradation as they recede from 
the focus of light. "It comprehends," says Professor 
Phillips, in his Lectures, "not only light and shade, with- 
out which the form of no objects can be perfectly repre- 
sented, but also all arrangements of light and dark colors 
in every degree; in short, in accordance with the com- 
pound word composing its name, which we have adopted 
from the Italian, the light and dark of a picture." Chiaro- 
oscuro particularly refers to the great masses of lights and 
shadows in a painting, when the objects are so disposed 
by artful management, that their lights are together on 
one side and their darks on the other. The best examples 
among the Italians are to be found in the works of Gor- 
reggio, Leonardo da Vinci, and Giorgione; among the 



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TERMS USED IN PAINTING. 47 

Dutch, in those of Rembrandt, Adrian van Ostade, and 
De Hooghe. A composition, however perfect in other 
respects, becomes a picture only by means of the chiaro- 
oscurOy which gives faithfulness to the representations, 
and therefore is of the highest importance to the painter; 
at the same time, it is one of the most difficult branches 
of the artist's study, because no precise rules can be given 
for its execution. 

Colorist is a painter whose peculiar excellence is his 
coloring, but not therefore his only excellence. Titian, 
Veronese, Rubens, are considered the best of colorists. 

Composition is the arrangement of objects and the dis- 
position of the parts so as to form an harmonious union 
of the whole; hence anything extraneous that disturbs 
the connection and diverts the mind from the general 
subject is a vice. Composition, which is the principal 
part of the invention of a painter, is by far the greatest 
difficulty he has to encounter. The compositions of 
Raphael are said to be grand, those of Veronese rich, 
those of Poussin classical, those of Teniers natural, 

Demi-Tints. — This term implies the various gradations 
of which a color is capable. 

Distemper is a preparation of colors without oil, only 
mixed with size, white of egg, or any such proper glu- 
tinous or unctuous substance. All ancient paintings were 
executed in this manner before the year 1460, when oil- 
painting was first discovered. The Cartoons of Raphael 
were painted in distemper. 

Drawings. — There are several kinds of drawings; in a 
general sense, the term is applied to any study or design 
made with black-lead pencils. In the English school. 



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48 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

frequent use is made of the designation "water-color 
drawings." 

Dryness is a term by which artists express the common 
defects of the early painters in oil, who had but little 
knowledge of the flowing contours which so elegantly 
show the delicate forms of the limbs and the insertion of 
the muscles; the flesh in their coloring appearing hard 
and stiff, instead of expressing softness and pliancy. 

Effect. — By effect, in painting, is understood the energy 
and beauty of the optical results of the combinations, 
accidental, or arising from calculations well understood, 
either of the lines, of the tones, bright or dark, or, again, 
of the colors of the tints. But it is especially to the 
combinations of the chiaro-oscuro that the effect owes 
its energy, its suavity, and its charm; and what proves 
it is the appearance of engravings which offer color 
without much effect; but it is optically subordinate to 
that which is obtained by the bright and dark, semi- 
bright and semi-dark masses, and we thus distinguish 
the effect of Rubens and the coloring of Titian. The 
pictures of Poussin and Raphael have but little effect; 
those of Vandyke, Velasquez, Gerard, Reynolds, and 
Prudhon have a great deal of effect. 

Foreshortening is the art of representing figures and 
objects as they appear to the eye, viewed in positions 
varying from the perpendicular. This art is one of the 
most difficult in painting, and though absurdly claimed 
as a modern invention, was well known to the ancients. 
Pliny speaks particularly of its having been practiced 
by Parrhasius and Pausias, two Greek painters; besides, 
it is impossible to execute any work of excellence with- 
out its employment. In painting domes and ceilings, 
foreshortening is particularly important. The meaning 
of the term is exemplified in the celebrated Ascension by 



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TERMS USED IN PAINTING. 49 

Luca Giordano, in which the body of Christ is so much 
foreshortened that the toes seem to touch the knees, and 
the knees the chin. (Will be known to many readers by 
engravings.) 

Harmony is that congenial, accordant, and pleasant 
effect in a picture resulting from an intelligent distribu- 
tion of light and shade, a judicious arrangement of 
colors, and a consistency and propriety in composition. 

Horizontal Line, in perspective, is a line that marks 
the horizon, or the place of the supposed horizon, and 
which is always on a level with the eye. 

Linear Perspective. — See Perspective. 

Loading is a term applied to laying colors in thick 
masses on the lights, so as to make them project from 
the surface, with a view to make them strongly illumi- 
nated by the light that falls on the picture, and thus 
mechanically to aid in producing roundness and relief, 
or to give a sparkling effect to polished or glittering 
objects. 

Local Colors are such as faithfully imitate those of a 
particular object, or such as are natural and proper for 
each particular object in a picture. Color is also dis- 
tinguished by the term " local," because the place it fills 
requires that particular color, in order to give a greater 
character of truth to the several tints with which it is 
contrasted. 

Manner is that habit which painters acquire, not only 
in the management of the pencil, but also in the princi- 
pal parts of painting, as invention, design, coloring. 
It is by the manner in painting that connoisseurs decide 
to what school it belongs, and by what particular master 



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50 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

of that school it was executed. Some masters have had 
a variety in their manners at different periods of life; 
others have so constantly adhered to one only, that those 
who have seen even a few of their pictures will immedi- 
ately know and judge of them without the risk of mis- 
take. The variety observable among artists arises from 
the manners of the different schools in which they have 
received their instruction, or of the artists under whom 
they have studied; for young painters, feeling a parti- 
ality for those masters they have imitated, prefer what 
they have long accustomed themselves to admire. Yet 
there are instances, among the great artists, of painters 
who have divested themselves of that early partiality so 
effectually as to fix on a manner far better adapted to 
their particular genius, and by this means have arrived 
at a greater excellence. Thus Raphael proceeded, and 
acquired a much more elevated manner, after he had 
quitted the school of Perugino and seen the works of 
Leonardo da Vinci. 

Mannerism is an affected style, contracted by an imita- 
tion of the peculiarities of some particular master, instead 
of a general contemplation of nature. 

Perspective. — The art of representing the appearance 
of objects as seen from a certain point of view. It is 
divided into geometrical or linear perspective and. the 
perspective of color or aerial perspective. Both are 
subjected to perfectly scientific rules, and without the 
observance of those rules no picture can have truth or 
life. Linear perspective describes or represents the posi- 
tion, form, and magnitude of objects, and their diminu- 
tion in proportion to their distance from the eye. Aerial 
perspective is the degradation of the tones of colors, 
which throws off the distances of grounds and objects, 
and which judicious artists practice by diffusing a kind 
of thin vapor over them, that deceives the eye agree- 



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TERMS USED IN PAINTING. 51 

ably. It shows the diminution of the colors of objects 
in proportion as they recede from the eye by the inter- 
position of the atmosphere between the eye and the 
objects. The proportion of this degradation is regulated 
by the purity of the atmosphere. Hence in a fog it 
will be greater at the distance of a few feet/ than in a 
clear sky at as many miles. Distant objects in a clear 
southern air appear to an eye accustomed to a thick 
northern atmosphere much nearer than they really are. 
Thus as the air changes, the aerial perspective must 
change. Morning, noon, evening, moonshine, winter, 
summer, the sea, etc., all have their different aerial 
perspective. In aerial perspective, the weakening of the 
tints corresponds to the foreshortening of the receding 
lines in linear perspective. In the illuminated parts of 
objects, the tints are represented more broken and fluc- 
tuating, and the shaded parts are often aided by reflec- 
tion. By aerial perspective, two results are obtained: 

1. Each object in a picture receives that degree of color 
and light which belongs to its distance from the eye; 

2. The various local tones are made to unite in one chief 
tone, which last is nothing else than the common color of 
the atmosphere and the light which penetrates it. The 
charm and harmony of a picture, particularly of a land- 
scape, depend greatly on a proper application of the 
laws of perspective. 

Reflected Lights are the borrowed lights, or lights 
coming from one object to another; and those reflected 
lights always partake of the tint of the object from which 
the light is reflected. Not only the atmosphere, but 
every object in nature, reflects light. 

Still Life. — The representations of inanimate objects, 
as dead game, vegetables, fruits, and flowers, musical 
and sporting instruments, weapons, tankards, glasses, 
etc., or of fishes and domestic animals of every descrip- 



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52 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTDfG; 

tion, when forming compositions by themselves, are 
called still life. 

Style. — Sir Joshua Reynolds says that "in painting, 
style is the same as in writing; a power over materials, 
whether words or colors, by which conceptions or senti- 
ments are conveyed." Styles vary in painting as in 
writing: some are grand, others plain; some florid, and 
others simple. The word very often signifies only the 
manner peculiar to a school or master, in design, com- 
position, coloring, expression, and execution. 

Tone is the harmony of coloring in a painting, or the 
happy effect produced by the proper degradation of light 
and shade, so as to cause all harshness and crudeness to 
disappear. 

Values. — Value, in a picture, is usually defined as the 
quantity of light or dark in a color or tone. It is the 
difference of pitch between one color or tone and an- 
other color or tone, whether the colors are different, as 
orange and yellow, or the same, as green and green. 
White light is the standard of values, and all colors in- 
crease in value as they approach this standard. Two 
objects of the same color, as rocks covered with snow, 
one three feet from the eye and the other thirty, will 
differ in degree or intensity of whiteness. The inter- 
vening atmosphere is the cause, but the difference is 
called difference in values. 



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CHAPTER III. 

LIST OF MATERIALS, WITH USES OP THE COLORS DE- 
SCRIBED. 

Where expense is a matter of little or no moment to 
the student, it will be best to secure the materials of the 
best old-established makers, such as Windsor & Newton "" 
or George Rowney & Sons^ but it by no means follows 
that the beginner should adopt the most expensive out- 
fit, for the author has tested several of the less expensive 
colors issued by the leading artists' color-men of 
America, and while some are certainly to be avoided, 
the use of which would render it impossible for the most 
painstaking student to produce satisfactory results, there 
are others which may quite safely be adopted as possess- 
ing most of the excellent qualities of the highest-priced 
European pigments. One of the most satisfactory boxes 
of colors, among such preparations, is called the No. 0, 
and is, I believe, imported from Paris. It contains 
eighteen moist colors and t hree bru shes, and is sold for 

'V?y^ " "^'^^- ^^^ colors are pure m tone and well ground, and 
, ^f^Q *T*Eave no reason to doubt their ordinary permanency, 

but the Chinese white which it contains had better be 
f^ replaced by a bottle of superior make. 

Moist colors in half-pans are the best adapted for all 
i ordinary work, and the student who overcomes the 

Yif ^ > >>^ ** "^ » temptation to possess a large number of colors in the 
belief that he thereby is able to easily produce any re- 
quired result, but who resolutely confines himself to a 
limited number, — say, at most, twenty, — will make the 
best and quickest progress; for he will be constantly 
proving the capacity and power of the colors in their 
numerous combinations. While I approve of the selec- 
tion of colors in the box referred to, I think it advisable 
to recommend the addition to it of the following: brown- 

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54 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

pink, orange-vermilion, and cadmium yellow. With this 
outfit you will possess a wizard's wand, to beckon into 
into being " things of beauty," joys forever. 

The colors marked thus * in the following list may be 
omitted. 

Yellow Ocher. — For sunny clouds, in thin washes mixed 
with vermilion, scarlet or crimson lake; for roads, 
mixed with light red or madder brown; for distant 
greens, mixed with blues and browns, thin; very useful 
to express extensive flat middle distance. 

Raw Sienna, — Very valuable to express rich, sunny 
and autumnal tones, mixed with the blues and browns; 
as a glaze (thin) over sunny green foliage is very effective. 

Gamboge is gummy in substance, and must, therefore, 
not be used too thick; produces a juicy green when 
mixed with Antwerp blue; alone, or only tinged with 
orange-vermilion, it is fine for the high lights in grasses 
and near foliage. 

Cadmium, — An intense yellow; mostly useful in sun- 
set effects, but will mix with Antwerp blue or indigo for 
very bright greens. 

Italian Pinh* — Mixed with indigo or Antwerp blue 
for rich grass-greens; alone, in medium wash, it makes a 
sunny effect upon near foliage and grasses; with a little 
Vandyke brown it makes a charming transparent shadow 
wash for middle distances; never use it thickly, but it 
may be strengthened sometimes by repeating the wash. 

Brown Pink, — With Antwerp blue or indigo it makes 
a series of rich greens for herbage and foliage; with gam- 
boge in light washes will produce very pretty sunny 
effects on sappy grasses and in the half-lights of all rich 



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LIST OF MATERIALS, WITH USES. 55 

brown foliage. It will be found a useful color in represent- 
ing extensive middle distances and foothills at the time 
when the grasses are changing into brown in early sum 
mer; and used carefully, nothing will exceed its beauty 
and truthfulness in depicting the brown shadows in pools 
and running brooks where rich brown soil prevails. 

Naples Yellow''' is opaque; hence must never be used in 
composing foreground greens; it is very effective in giving 
the pale yellow light in morning skies, and with a little 
vermilion added it represents the soft light lines of cloud 
frequently seen in an otherwise blue sky. 

Indian Red, — A useful dull red, valuable for composing 
purplish grays by mixture with French blue or cobalt. 
Care must be observed in its use, as it is with difficulty 
removed from the paper when once dry. 

Light Red. — One of the most useful colors; mixed with 
blues, almost every kind of gray can be made; with Van- 
dyke brown, rich, old, broken "adobe" and earth banks 
can be represented. 

Orange- Vermilion, — Much more useful than the ordi- 
nary vermilion; an expensive color to grind, therefore care 
should be exercised in selection; when a landscape is 
intended to be very bright and sunny, or a sunset, the 
prehminary wash over the entire paper, as recommended 
in Chapter IV, may be made of this, instead of the mix- 
ture there recommended; in very thin washes it is useful 
for whitewashed houses or barns on the sunlit sides, par- 
ticularly when the sun is low down in the afternoon (the 
sides in shadow then to be in neutral purple, composed 
of blue, red, and ivory-black, or sepia). 

Carmine gives very truthfully the delightful sunset 
reflections upon the snow-clad Sierras, seen at their best 



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56 A GUIDE TO WATEB-COLOB PAINTING. 

during the rainy season; makes delicious shadow com- 
binations with French blue, Antwerp or indigo; useful in 
brilliant touches of drapery, and just tingeing a weak 
wash of emerald-green will give a very beautiful passage 
of distant, sunny, rolling meadows. This should be done 
by applying it in very delicate tint over the green when 
dry, called a ''glaze." 

Crimson Lake. — Heavier than the above; more useful 
in mixing with French blue or indigo for very dark mark- 
ings, but, on the whole, should not be preferred to carmine. 

Alizarin Crimson. — Somewhat preferable to crimson 
lake. 

Rose-Madder.* — A beautiful tender color, useful in 
forming warm shadow clouds and grays with the various 
blues and black. 

Burnt Sienna. — Invaluable. Mixed with Antwerp blue 
it makes a warm sunny green; with indigo, a deep, rich- 
toned, shadow green; if a picture nearing completion is 
found to have a too green or crude appearance, a thin 
wash of burnt sienna over the parts in light will very 
materially help it; with madder brown, every variety of 
red cow .can be painted; of constant use, also, in roads, 
brick, tiles, and interwoven with Vandyke brown it breaks 
up large surfaces of green herbage so as to give the appear- 
ance of grasses and multiplicity of weeds, etc.; in very 
thin wash it gives the smooth bark of the eucalyptus in 
sunlight, and with a little carmine it gives the berry of 
the pepper tree; mixed with a little madder brown, it 
makes a good color for the side of the orange in shade, 
while the lightest part is of orange- vermilion. 

X H^dl Ultramarine. — The most perfect blue, but washes 
badly, and is therefore not the best for beginners. It is, 



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LIST OP MATERIALS, WITH USES. 57 

moreover, very expensive, and on this account alone is 
not often to be found in ordinary palettes. The French 
blue and cobalt are very satisfactory substitutes. 

Cobalt Blue. — One of the indispensable colors in the 
water-color box; it is semi-opaque, and therefore should 
not be used heavily in composing foreground greens, but 
in skies and distances, in composing grays with any of 
the reds, and purples with any of the lakes, and neutral 
grays with sepia for rocks, stems of trees, and other broken 
foreground items, it is most valuable. In combination 
with gamboge, it makes very brilliant greens. 

Antwerp Blue. — In addition to its usefulness in the 
creation of greens, by admixture with the yellows, and a 
beautiful transparent green by mixture with Vandyke 
brown, it makes a series of valuable grays for rocks and 
cliffs, when mixed with madder brown, or Indian red, or 
light red. It is not supposed to be very permanent, 
hence is not used so freely as French blue or indigo. 



Prussian Blue. — Is stronger than Antwerp blue. Must 
be used with caution, because of its strength. 

French Blue is much used because of its transparent 
quality and moderate tone. It makes good shadow tints 
for clouds in combination with madder brown, Indian red, 
light red, or ivory-black, and a range of useful shadow 
tints, with crimson lake and ivory-black, or with sepia 
and carmine; it is serviceable at times to strengthen the 
blue in skies. This is often called French ultramarine. 

Indigo. — In mixing indigo it must be used sparingly, 
because of its tendency to blackness. It is an intensely 
cold color, hence is applicable to making sea washes and 
running water; mixtures of indigo (very light) with light 
red, orange-vermilion, or madder brown make a series of 



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68 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

cool grays for objects in distances; with crimson lake or 
carmine in thin washes it makes good purplish shadows 
for middle-distance objects. 

Madder Brown has a tendency to redness; makes a good 
wash for near rock-masses on which the sun falls; for this 
purpose a very small portion of French or cobalt blue 
should be added, when the wash is dry; put in the forms 
that are in half-light with same mixture slightly strength- 
ened, then, when again dry, the darkest touches with 
additional strength of same color. Madder brown is also 
useful for putting in the dark, rich touches among bram- 
bles and herbage, for markings in roads and ruts, and for 
making slender tree branches, where they possess any 
color. 

Vandyke Brown, — Perhaps the most useful brown; with 
gamboge it makes a pretty color for tree-masses; with the 
blues it makes very quiet greens for low-toned pictures; 
it is much used as a glaze over greens, to subdue them; 
for masses of brown, which frequently exist in middle 
distances, it is unequaled; it should be used in thin 
washes generally, and repeated when necessary, instead 
of laying it with full strength in one wash. 

Sepia is colder than Vandyke brown; makes splendid 
cool grays, mixed with cobalt for distances, and is useful 
in roads, banks of earth, tree stems, etc. 

Ivory-Blaek is serviceable in reducing the brilliancy of 
some intense colors where it is necessary to make very 
dark masses or markings; with the reds it makes a series 
of grays, useful in some winter skies or masses of distant 
rocks or cliffs, and mixed with cobalt or French blue it 
makes a colder tint for similar purposes. It must be used 
sparingly. 



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LIST OF MATERIALS, WITH USES. , 59 

Emerald'Oreen. — For bits of brilliant drapery, such as 
a woman's shawl or a rug, when it is necessary to intro- 
duce it; for that indescribable tint in deep-sea water, under 
certain aspects, and for such exceptional passages of color 
as I have indicated under "Carmine." If kept moist, a 
half-pan will last for years in ordinary practice. 

Purple Madder.* — Useful in sunset effects chiefly; a 
very beautiful color, but, like all the madders, is not 
permanent. 

Chinese White. — This is best kept in tube, and it is 
advisable to use only the best make, as there are many 
sold which do not dry perfectly white, and some which do 
not dry thoroughly at all; it should never be used where 
it can possibly be avoided, nevertheless there are occasions 
when its use is inevitable, and effects which cannot be 
represented truthfully without it, such, for instance, as 
the morning effect treated of in Chapter IV. The student 
will discover in time that it must be used occasionally to 
assist in the production of floating mists and the dreamy, 
hazy mysteries of distant hills and valleys. It would be 
too bewildering to the beginner to attempt a description 
of its use to produce the most subtle effects in landscape; 
as we have said, it is a pigment the use of which, to an 
appreciable extent, it is a virtue to ignore rather than to 
encourage. It is useful, however, to lay on small high 
lights which cannot be judicially either "left out" or 
"taken out" (see Chapter V), and for putting in figures 
or cattle under same conditions. 

Now, the beginner will not act wisely if he encumbers 
himself with more than the colors enumerated above. 
The writer has found in a life's experience that every re- 
quirement of the art can be met by this combination. 

The colors should be arranged in his box in the fol- 
lowing order, so that, as he holds it in his left, the 



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60 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOB PAINTING. 

yellows should be nearest his right hand, the reds next, 
the blues next, and such colors as Vandyke brown, 
ivory-black, green, sepia, and . Chinese white last; by 
ever keeping them in this order he will soon acquire a 
rapid facility of fixing his brush upon the color he 
desires, without having to refer to their position and 
names on a chart, which it is advisable he should make 
as soon as he has placed them, for use will soon make 
their surfaces look very much alike. 

PAPER. / 

Always use Whatman^s "Extra Stout Not," which 
means that the surface is not hot-pressed. This is better 
in many particulars than a smoother surface. Most 
artists' color-men keep this paper in what are known 
as ** sketch-blocks," containing many sheets of paper 
fastened securely at their edges on a thick cardboard, 
and when a drawing is finished it is easily removed by 
passing a knife around the edges, when the block presents 
a fresh sheet again ready for another picture without 
trouble of mounting. This, of course, has its advantage 
in saving of time and labor, but this is more than 
compensated for in the case of working and the more 
satisfactory flow of the washes upon the paper, if the 
student will adopt the following method: Obtain a 
drawing-board, perfectly square (say 15 x 10 inches); 
have your paper large enough to fold over the back of 
the board one inch all round; damp the paper on both 
sides with a very soft sponge (applying the water by 
taps, not by rubbing); allow it to become nearly dry, 
but take care that it is not quite dry; then place the 
board upon it, cut the corners so that the end shall 
overlap the sides when they are pasted over on the back 
without forming a crease at the corner; this is done, of 
course, by cutting out a right angle; then paste the 
edges firmly on back of board, and place the board with 
pasted edges downward on a flat surface to dry. If this 



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LIST OF MATERIALS, WITH USES. 61 

is properly done, the paper, when dry, will present a flat 
dead surface, and will not pucker during the progress of 
the drawing, which occurs, more or less, with the blocks. 
Paper has a finished and an unfinished side, the 
finished side (on which, of course, the picture is painted) 
may be ascertained by holding the sheet between the eye 
and the light, and when the name *' Whatman," in water- 
mark, reads rightly from left to right, then the finished 
side is near the eye, and it may be indicated by placing 
a mark in the corners of the paper, which can then be 
cut into required sizes without losing sight of the right 
side. 

BRUSHES. 

It is indispensable to have a good water or sky brush, 
and although, of course, a sable would always be pre- 
ferred, yet the *' Siberian hair" is a really good brush, 
and is only one third the cost of sable. It should be at 
least half an inch wide at the ferrule, and flat, with full 
hairs. 

The other brushes should be of three sizes, — one for 
very fine touches, the next for general work, and the 
third for large washes, the largest of the three being less 
than the thickness of a small cedar pencil. They are 
known in the best makers' lists as Nos. 2, 4, and 6, in '^ 
round albata ferrules. An easel, a small fine sponge, and ^ 
some thick blotting-paper will complete the outfit for 
studio^work. 

For outdoor sketching the following items will add 
much to the convenience and enjoyment of the work: 
sketching-stool, light sketching-easel, umbrella with joint 
and spike to drive into the ground, water-bottle, and 
small cups or dippers. 



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CHAPTER IV. 

ON MIXING COLORS, WITH A LIST OF USEFUL COMBINATIONS. 

Always have regard to the extent or quantity of the 
wash required, then place in your palette the necessary 
quantity of water, to which you will add the color or 
colors until the requisite degree of strength is obtained; 
by this means uniformity of tone is secured; and here 
must be reiterated the instruction to be careful in seeing 
that all the color is discharged from the brush, or the 
result will be blotches as the brush is applied to the 
paper. In mixing color for dark, small markings, do 
not use much water, but use the brush saturated only at 
its point; by this means the color can be applied strong 
and crisp, which is essential in the foreground detail. In 
taking the color from the pans, see that your brush is 
moist only, not full of water, for if it is, you will waste 
much of your pigments, and your box will too speedily 
require replenishing. When two tints have to be blended, 
it is not necessary to use two brushes, — indeed, it will 
be found advantageous to use the same brush; having 
both tints ready prepared, dip the brush into the second 
tint and apply it to the lower edge of the first wash; 
the point of unison will be less perceptible than if two 
brushes are used. When Chinese white is used with 
any tint, it is best to rub the white into the tint with the 
finger-point, for if the brush is used for this purpose, it 
will nearly always be found that particles of the white 
remain uncharged with the tint, and although their 
measurement is infinitesimal, yet the result of the wash 
will be** chalky." 

Such small matters of detail as this, and many others 
contained in this little guide, may be considered for the 
moment as trifling and unimportant, but the student 
will soon find that they contribute very materially to his 

62 



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MIXING COLOBS — COMBINATIONS. 



63 



progress in practice and add many charms to pictorial 
effect. 

SOME COLOB COMBINATIONS FOR SKIES. 

Clear blue sky. Ultramarine, cobalt, or cobalt and 

very little rose-madder. 

Light clouds. Orange vermilion, or light red and 

yellow ocher, or Naples yellow tinged 
with rose-madder or vermilion. 



Shaded clouds 
{warm). 



Cold clouds. 



Purple clouds 
{at sunset). 



Cnmson clouds 
{sunset). 

Brilliant yellow 
of sunset. 

Subdued yellow 
of sunset. 



Distant sea. 



Yellow ocher and madder brown, or 
Naples yellow and madder brown, or 
ivory-black and light red, or light red 
and cobalt. 

Indigo and light red, or ivory-black 
and indigo, or Payne's gray and light 
red; or indigo, French blue, and ver- 
milion. 

Crimson lake and French blue, 
crimson lake and cobalt, carmine and 
French blue, carmine and indigo, or 
purple madder. 

Crimson lake, or crimson lake and 
carmine, or light red and rose-madder. 

Cadmium yellow, or cadmium and 
gamboge. 

Yellow ocher and Indian red, or a 
little rose-madder. 

COMBINATIONS FOR SEA. 

Indigo, or French blue, or French 
blue and ivory-black, and for the deep 



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64 



A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 



purplish blue frequently seen below 
the horizon or under dark clouds, use 
indigo and crimson lake. 

Stormy sea. Raw sienna and ivory-black, burnt 

sienna and indigo, or burnt sienna and 
Antwerp blue, or cobalt blue and Van- 
dyke brown, or raw sienna and Van- 
dyke brown. 

Sea-greens. Cobalt and gamboge, Prussian blue 

and gamboge, cadmium yellow and Ant- 
werp blue, cadmium yellow and French 
blue. 

Emerald-green (this is rarely used 
alone, but for the beautiful green, full of 
light, sometimes seen in deep rock- 
pools, a thin wash of this over gamboge 
and cobalt is admirable), raw sienna 
and indigo. For those parts of the 
waves catching most light, use raw 
sienna, or raw sienna and Vandyke 
brown, or Roman ocher. 



Deep shadows in 
waves possess- 
ing color. 



Burnt sienna and cobalt, or burnt 
sienna and indigo, or indigo and touch 
of crimson lake. 



ROCKS. 

Rocks of gray. Payne's gray (very light) or ivory- 

black and light red, or ivory-black and 
vermilion, or ivory-black and madder 
brown, or cobalt and light red, or indigo 
and light red, or Vandyke brown and 
French blue, or indigo and madder 



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MIXING COLORS — COMBINATION^." 



65 



brown, or indigo and rose-madder and a 
little yellow ocher, or orange-vermilion 
and ivory-black, or orange-vermilion 
and blue. 



Rocks having 
color. 



MountainB 

(remote). 



Burnt sienna, or burnt sienna and 
ivory -black, or burnt sienna and 
Payne's gray, or madder brown, or 
madder brown and sepia (a beautiful 
color), or madder brown and raw 
sienna, or Payne's gray and vermilion. 

Cobalt, with slight addition of yellow 
ocher and rose-madder; cobalt, indigo, 
and rose-madder; or cobalt and Payne's 
gray and a little rose-madder. If very 
cold, Payne's gray and cobalt, or 
Payne's gray and indigo. 



Mountains 

{nearer). 



Patches of herb- 
age on moun- 
tains irii dis' 
tanee. 



First wash over with yellow ocher 
and light red, or yellow ocher and brown 
madder; or if very sunny, use yellow 
ocher and rose-madder, or light red 
alone. Put in the shadows with French 
blue and madder brown, or cobalt and 
madder brown; or madder brown, 
Payne's gray, and cobalt; or cobalt, 
sepia, and madder brown; or indigo and 
purple madder; or cobalt, ivory-black, 
and purple madder. 

Yellow ocher, Antwerp blue, and a 
little rose-madder; or yellow ocher and 
a little cobalt; or yellow ocher, indigo, 
and a little light red; or yellow ocher, 
Vandyke brown, and a little cobalt; or 
raw sienna and cobalt, with a little 



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66 A GUIDE TO WATER-OOLOR PAINTING. 

rose-madder. The above may be glazed 
afterwards with light washes of either 
of the following: gamboge, Italian pink, 
raw sienna, or burnt sienna. 

FOREGROUND, HERBAGE, ETC. 

Orass-greens, Antwerp blue and Indian yellow, or 

^ Prussian blue and Indian yellow, or 

gamboge and blue. 



Broken greens. 



Warm tones in 
sun. 



Burnt sienna, Indian yellow, and 
Antwerp blue; or raw sienna, lake, and 
Prussian blue; or gamboge, sepia, and 
indigo; or brown pink and Antwerp 
blue; or brown pink and indigo; or 
brown pink alone. 

Burnt sienna, or raw sienna, or In- 
dian yellow and madder brown, or Ital- 
ian pink, or gamboge and rose-madder, 
or Indian yellow and a little lake. 



Olossy leaves in Cobalt and Indian yellow, gamboge 
high light and cobalt, Prussian blue and rose- 

madder, or indigo and rose-madder, or 
cobalt and Naples yellow, or indigo. 

Dead stems and Madder brown, or madder brown and 
Leaves. burnt sienna, or burnt sienna and Van- 

dyke brown, or Vandyke brown and 
crimson lake, or burnt sienna alone. 

FOR CATTLE AND OTHER ANIMALS. 

If dark brown. Vandyke brown; or Vandyke brown, 

sepia, and crimson lake; or crimson 
lake and ivory-black. 



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MIXING COLORS — COMBINATIONS. 67 

Ij bay. Madder brown and a little yellow 

ocher, madder brown and light red, or 
burnt sienna and madder brown, or 
Indian red and madder brown. 

If light. Either yellow ocher, burnt sienna, or 

light red. 

If black. Ivory-black and crimson lake; or 

ivory-black, indigo, and carmine; or 
indigo and crimson lake; or Prussian 
blue and crimson lake; or Payne's gray 
and Vandyke brown. 

Sheep, Either yellow ocher, Roman ocher, 

or Roman ocher and Vandyke brown; 
or yellow ocher and a little madder 
brown. 

FOLIAGE. 

In representing foreground foliage, the first important 
consideration is its character. Note and sketch accurately 
its outline, its masses in light and in shade, and the direc- 
tion of its branches and stems. Remember that you can- 
not paint in detail its multitudinous leaves, but yet must 
represent their appearance^ hence the lights and shadows 
must be sharp and crisp. This is effected best by using 
the color tolerably dry, and applying it by dragging the 
side of the brush on the paper. The following combina- 
tions will supply every required need, and in making 
your selection, first assure yourself of the distinctive 
color of the tree, or its appearance, whether it is more or 
less yellow, as in strong, mid-day light, or inclined to 
red or rich brown, as in evening light. I have thought it 
advisable to specify the combinations best adapted for 
the portrayal of trees characteristic of the ordinary Cali- 
fornia landscape, as general remarks would not sufSciently 



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68 



A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 



apply to such trees as the pepper, the live-oak, and the 
palm, and I am not aware that any specific instructions 
for the painting of these have been hitherto published. 

Distant foliage. Very distant foliage must be put in 

without any detail, merely regarding 
the outline or form, and the tints used 
must be more or less gray or neutral, 
because it will be observed that green 
trees in the extreme distance do not 
appear green, but are only darker 
masses than the objects surrounding 
them. For this purpose use cobalt 
blue and light red, or French blue and 
light red, or cobalt and burnt sienna, 
or madder brown and indigo (avoid- 
ing heaviness), or sepia and a little co- 
balt blue. Sometimes extreme distance 
foliage is best represented by cobalt 
or French blue alone, and afterwards 
touched lightly on their shadow sides 
with rose-madder or Vandyke brown. 



Middh'distance 
foliage 



must partake more of its local or 
actual coloring, but yet must be kept 
subdued in tone and show no intricate 
detail of form. In general sunlight 
effects, the parts in light are well rep- 
resented by yellow ocher and a little 
French blue; or sepia, yellow ocher, 
and a little French blue, or yellow 
ocher and Vandyke brown, or pale 
Indian yellow and a little indigo and 
Vandyke brown, or raw sienna and 
cobalt, and the side parts in shade by 
Vandyke brown and French blue, or 
Vandyke brown and indigo, or madder 



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MIXING COLORS — COMBINATIONS. 69 

brown and indigo, or sepia and Van- 
dyke brown, or a little lake with in- 
digo and Vandyke brown. The stems 
should be 'Haken out" (if seen), and 
the places then tinted with light red, 
or pale Vandyke brown and red, or 
raw sienna. If it is found necessary 
to add touches or washes of still deeper 
tone, which become necessary only as 
the foreground is approached, let the 
colors used be quiet and brown. 



Foregrowad foli" 
age generally 
(light). 



Those marked thus * 
are for autumnal or 
evening effects. 



Raw sienna, Italian pink, gamboge, 
gamboge and sepia, gamboge and Van- 
dyke brown, Indian yellow and a little 
Antwerp blue, Italian pink and Ant- 
werp blue; gamboge, burnt sienna, and 
Antwerp blue; * Italian pink, indigo, 
and a little burnt sienna; gamboge, 
brown madder, and Antwerp blue; 
brown pink and a little indigo; * burnt 
sienna, * Indian yellow, * Indian yel- 
low and lake, * Italian pink and a little 
burnt sienna. 



In shade. Vandyke brown and indigo; Van- 

dyke brown, burnt sienna, and Antwerp 
blue; Vandyke brown and French blue; 
Vandyke brown, brown pink, and 
French blue; madder-brown, indigo, 
and gamboge; * Indian yellow and 
purple madder; * Prussian blue and 
lake; * French blue and lake; raw 
sienna, Antwerp blue, and Vandyke 
brown; * Roman ocher and madder 
brown, olive green. 



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70 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

Several coIotb not contained in the beginner's box are 
mentioned here, but it does not imply the necessity of 
using them, only to make the list of combinations toler- 
ably complete, in order that the student may at his 
convenience use them when desirous of extending his 
knowledge of pigments and their expression. 

Pepper Tree, — First wash of gamboge and a little Ant- 
werp blue; indicate the thickest masses in shade by a 
wash of the same, to which a little more Antwerp blue 
and burnt sienna is added; note the deepest small 
shadows and put them in with Vandyke brown and 
indigo; make the drooping stems of raw sienna and 
Vandyke brown, and the stump and larger branches of 
yellow ocher, light red, and a little vermilion. When 
perfectly dry, take out fine lines of light in a few places 
against the shadow masses (to represent the sheen pro- 
duced by the sunlight upon the drooping stems and 
leaves); this can be done very effectively by a careful 
use of the point of a sharp knife, instead of using water 
and handkerchief, which would frequently make too 
wide a line; afterwards, to finish, use Vandyke brown, 
or Vandyke brown and a little lake, or madder brown to 
give the shaded sides of the trunk and large branches, 
also the deepest foliage shadows, and finally, add touches 
of deep color, crisp and sharp, to the stalks and stems, 
where required, using Vandyke brown, burnt sienna, or 
madder brown, or varied compounds of them. It may 
be found necessary to touch the lines of light taken out 
by the knife with a fine-pointed brush charged with 
Naples yellow. When the tree is in berry, and it is 
required to represent the clusters of tiny crimson globes 
which, next to the orange, fascinate the eyes of all our 
visitors, it will be found best to first paint the tree; then, 
after rubbing up, with the finger-tip, some Chinese white 
into a thick pasty consistency to apply it with a flne- 
pointed brush (only using the point for the purpose), and 



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MIXING COLORS — COMBINATIONS. 71 

when the clusters are formed and are quite dry, mix two 
tints, one of crimson lake or carmine and the other of 
burnt sienna, and (using a separate brush for each tint) 
apply them irregularly to the white, sometimes using 
the burnt sienna tint and at other points the carmine or 
lake. Do not touch any one berry, while wet, with both 
tints; wait until again perfectly dry, then finish by 
touching the berries on their shaded sides with Vandyke 
brown, and unite them by tendril stems of the same 
color. 

This may be a good place to emphasize an important 
lesson as to the value of shadows. Supposing you have 
painted your tree against clear sky, with no surroundings 
but the sward or pathway by which it stands, look at it, 
now that you have finished it, and, unless you are 
conceited, you will note, however successfully you may 
have done your work, that there is something still lack- 
ing; it looks bare and imfinishedj although the tree 
itself may be sufficiently and effectively finished. It 
requires its inevitable shadow. It could not exist without 
a shadow; you never saw one without its complement. 
So, mix a tolerably strong wash of Antwerp blue, crimson 
lake and ivory-black, and with a brush well charged with 
this tint lay it over the proper ground-space from the 
trunk of the tree outward, and you immediately strike 
your tree into life. 

Live-Oak. — Note the "bunchy" appearance of the 
foliage masses, indicating the requirement of more 
broken washes than the ordinary oak and other trees. 
The most useful combinations are : gamboge and Van- 
dyke brown; yellow ocher, Vandyke brown, and indigo; 
Indian yellow and Vandyke brown; brown pink and 
French blue; burnt sienna and Antwerp blue, with 
indigo added for black shadows; Roman ocher and 
French blue; raw sienna, madder brown, and Prussian 



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72 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

blue; gamboge, ivory-black, and a little Antwerp blue; 
olive-green. For glazing, use raw sienna or burnt sienna, 
very thin. 

Its Tnmk and Branches, — Madder brown and indigo; 
sepia and madder brown; burnt sienna and Payne's 
gray; madder brown and ivory-black; raw sienna and a 
little carmine or crimson lake; sepia and Vandyke brown. 

Paim. — Use gamboge and cobalt; gamboge and Ant- 
werp blue, or pale cadmium and Prussian blue for first 
wash. For the shaded sides of the leaves use same wash, 
with indigo or Prussian blue added. Glaze the shaded 
sides with Antwerp blue and burnt sienna, or burnt 
sienna alone, or madder brown alone. Put in the stalk 
with burnt sienna and Vandyke brown, or burnt sienna 
heightened by a touch of vermilion, if in strong light, 
and mark out the diamond-like cuttings with madder 
brown and ivory-black. Treat the lines of light upon 
the sharp blades in same manner as given under *^ Pepper 
tree." 



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CHAPTER V. 

ON BROAD WASHES FOR SKIES, SEA, FLAT DISTANCES, ETC. 

The beginner finds one of his greatest difficulties in lay- 
ing on broad, flat washes without producing ridges of color, 
or streakiness, which, of course, would be fatal to clear, 
unbroken sky effects. The paper should be moistened 
while at an angle of forty-five degrees (and this is about 
the inclination the drawing should occupy during the 
whole process of painting the picture) by passing the flat 
sable or " sky " brush, charged with clear water, over the 
whole surface, beginning on the left-hand top corner and 
working the brush from left to right; a slight tremulous 
motion of the hand during the process will help the paper 
to absorb the water, and after carrying the brush across 
the surface it should be again quickly charged with water, 
and be placed just at the lower edge of the last wash, so 
as to catch the deposit of moisture there, and so carried 
across in^as rapid succession as possible, until the whole 
surface is moistened. 

Two or three minutes should be allowed to elapse, in 
order that the paper may thoroughly absorb the moisture, 
and then, while it is still damp, but having no floating 
water on its surface, there should be passed over it, in the 
same manner, an orange wash composed of yellow ocher 
and light red, — if the picture is to be an ordinary sun- 
light effect, — or of yellow ocher and Indian red or mad- 
der brown if the effect is to be somber or gray. Now, 
here it is necessary to emphasize the above instruction 
about the exercise of extreme care to prevent too much 
moisture floating at the lower edge of each successive 
wash across the paper, for should the color be allowed to 
float too heavily, it will break away an(} trickle in a line 
down the paper, which line would be seen forever after* 
wards, however many washes the drawing might there- 

73 * 



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74 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

after receive. As this accident is a common one with 
beginners, and as the successful operation of laying flat 
or graduated washes is the secret of much of the charm 
of water-color pictures, the student will do well to prac- 
tice this method diligently at the beginning, and in a few 
days it will become an easy matter. It will be found 
advisable at times, when it is seen the brush is too full, 
to touch it to a damp sponge, which will absorb some of 
the superfluous wash. 

One word more on this important, although apparently 
very simple, process of laying a perfectly flat wash: In 
continuing the color downwards, let the newly charged 
brush only touch the floating color in the previous line, 
so as to blend it; don't rub the brush up into the past 
color space. Should it be found that the paper seems 
greasy, and refuses to accept the wash easily, just add 
three drops of ox-gall to the water in use (say to half a 
tumblerful). 

The use of the above wash of neutral orange (see Chap- 
ter III, under Orange Vermilion) serves in a remarkable 
degree to preserve atmosphere in the picture, as it slightly 
breaks the subsequent layers of color, and prevents crude- 
ness. Now, suppose the sky. to be represented is an ordi- 
nary blue sky with a broken line or two of soft light 
clouds. Make a wash of cobalt blue of the desired 
strength, always taking care that you make wash enough 
to cover your sky-space, — ad it would be difficult to make 
a second of the exact tone if you ran short, — and begin- 
ning at the top left-hand corner, carry it over all the 
paper representing sky-space, except the parts of light 
clouds, and when you reach the horizon, apply to the 
lowest edge of the wash a piece of thick blotting-paper to 
absorb the moisture; do not press the blotting on the 
color, only touch its edge, and so draw the superfluous 
moisture down into the blotting; this will be found to 
slightly reduce the tone of blue at and near the horizon. 
Before using this wash, however, and when the orange 



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BROAD WASHES. 75 

wash is perfectly dry, go over the whole surface with clear 
water, as in the first instance. This answers two purposes: 
1. It removes any small particles of orange color which 
have not been absorbed into the paper, and which, if not 
so removed, would depreciate the purity of any after 
washes; and 2. It prepares the paper again to receive 
the cobalt without causing lines or ridges, which would 
probably occur if the cobalt were applied to the paper 
when dry. Should it be found that the cobalt, when dry, 
is not of the desired strength, repeat the wash (or a 
diluted one) after clear water, as at first. 

The clouds may next be put in (the blue being dry) 
with a slight wash of Naples yellow tinged with vermilion. 
When this is dry, go over the whole again with water, 
which will tend to soften the edges of the clouds; this last 
water-bath should be brought down over the entire paper. 

FOR GRADUATED WASHES — USEFUL IN SOFT SUNRISE AND 
SUNSET EFFECTS. 

After the preliminary orange wash, which for morning 
should have the slightest touch of red only, and for even- 
ing an addition of a small quantity of cadmium in the 
space just above the horizon, mix a wash of cadmium or 
chrome yellow and commence at the top, as usual, with 
clear water, bringing it down over one third of the sky, 
or a little beyond; then let the water-brush be dipped in 
the yellow wash without thoroughly becoming charged 
with the fuU strength of the color, and blend into the 
water-line right! across the paper; at the next free dip of 
the brush into the color it will become charged with the 
full strength of yellow; blend it into the last application 
in the usual manner, and so on down to a short distance 
from the horizon; then dip the brush in clear water so as 
to reduce the color-strength again, and so on with each 
successive application, and the result will be a soft 
graduated tint from light orange to pale yellow, deep 
yellow, pale yellow again, into the orange below; when 



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76 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

dry, apply clear water, as usual; then when the paper is 
almost dry, turn the drawing-board upside down and 
begin at the top (which is the base of the picture) with 
clear water, and bring it down to where the yellow was 
first commenced, and at this point commence a tint of 
cobalt blue to which is added a touch of vermilion, and 
carry this tint right on over the upper sky. When dry, 
and after the clear wash, again repeat this process, with 
less vermilion than before, and blending it into the water 
a little lower in the sky, — that is, let it be commenced 
over the pale yellow tint, — and the result, when dry, 
will be a pearly upper blue graduating into an almost 
imperceptible tender green, and then into the transparent 
yellow and pale tint near the horizon. Be sure the board 
is not reversed while the paper is wet. 

A few soft, purple clouds may now be touched in near 
the upper sky, and these may be composed of carmine or 
crimson lake, and ultramarine or French blue, of moderate 
strength only. Across the lowest sky may now be put in 
the crimson or purple lake colored clouds, which so fre- 
quently are seen in combination with such an effect,'and 
these are accomplished by using in moderate or full 
strength, as the occasion requires, either crimson lake, 
crimson lake and carmine, or purple lake. Against such 
a sky a broken mass of deep foliage, composed of Vandyke 
brown, Indian yellow, and indigo or French blue, is very 
effective. 

A quiet graduated morning effect may be secured by 
washes in the same manner, by using thePfoUowing tints: 
Naples yellow and a touch of gamboge, for the light por- 
tion; cobalt blue and ivory-black, or cobalt blue and 
lampblack, or cobalt blue and Payne's gray, with a particle 
of indigo added, for the upper sky (a very weak wash), 
and the lower sky bearing a layer of clouds with sharp 
broken edges, composed of Payne's gray and indigo, very 
thin, to which should be added a bit of Chinese white, 
say, about the size of two pins' heads for a drawing 



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BROAD WASHES. 77 

12 X 9 inches. The white is added for two purposes: 
First, because, being opaque, it will operate to prevent 
the bluish gray wash turning green in contact with the 
pale yellow light upon which it is placed, and next, 
because its opacity will help to give the cold, lifeless 
appearance to the lower clouds or mists, which the sun is 
not strong enough to permeate. 

It is not too much to say that the student who prac- 
tices these two combinations of sky-color and methods a 
few times will be rewarded by a facility in the execution 
of broad and graduated washes, as well as by an appre- 
ciation of the power of water-color to represent atmos- 
phere to an extent far beyond his expectations. 

It will sometimes be found, even after the utmost care 
has been exercised, that slight lines of color are formed, 
called streakiness, and frequently they can be modified, 
during the process of washing off with clear water, by 
repeated applications of the brush across the lines or 
streaks. When once a space is covered by color, do not 
go back over it with another wash while it is wet; if it 
requires strengthening, wait until it is quite dry. Every 
time the brush is carried to the palette for color, quickly 
mix the wash, or a sediment will form and the wash on 
the paper be uneven. 

In painting masses of graduated color, such as round 
masses of cloud, the lightest tint of the mass should be 
painted first and carried all over it; when this is dry, the 
next or half tints should be put upon it, and so on until 
the deepest tints are put in with small decided touches. 



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CHAPTER VI. 

ON VAKI0U8 MEANS AND METHODS. 

In the last chapter sufficient emphasis has been laid 
on the necessity of allowing each successive wash to dry 
before applying the next, and of keeping the color on 
the palette constantly stirred to prevent formation of 
sediment, also, that, to insure delicacy and uniformity in 
all large washes, such as skies and distances, clear water 
should be used between the washes. Blotting-paper 
may be used to absorb the superfluous moisture of this 
clear wash by pressing it evenly over the entire surface, 
thereby leaving the paper ready at once to receive the 
next wash, and saving time. 

High Lights. — Clear and sharp lights, such as the 
silvery edges of some clouds, or the reflection of same in 
water, or any object catching bright light, should, when 
possible, be left out; that is, the spaces should not 
receive the first or succeeding washes; but if they are 
only half-lights, being soft and indistinct, then they may 
be passed over with the wash, and blotting-paper pressed 
upon the spaces immediately to absorb the color. 

Use of Sponge and Blotting in Softening or Rounding 
Masses of Color, Producing Half-Lights, etc, — Where it is 
desirable to soften the edges of a mass, or, say, to gradu- 
ate the color in clouds, let the sponge be squeezed as 
dry as possible and applied carefully to the parts required 
to be lightened, constantly after every touch turning the 
sponge a little, so as to apply a clean surface at every 
application to the color. If the sponge is of a fine fiber 
and squeezed sufficiently dry, the effect will be very 
satisfactory. For small spaces the blotting may be sub- 
stituted for the sponge, applying its edge to the part. 

78 



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VARIOUS MEANS AND METHODS, 79 

Sometimes the desired gradation of tone can be secured 
best by applying the brush to the moist color, after 
squeezing it through the sponge. Either of these methods 
may be adopted in representing light reflections in still 
water (used perpendicularly), which will produce a 
pretty and very truthful transparent effect, if, when dry, 
a line or two of light and sky color are drawn horizon- 
tally across them. The sponge is also useful, when the 
surface of the drawing is dry, to remove too heavy 
patches of color, but it is advisable again to enforce the 
precaution of squeezing it as dry as possible before every 
application to the paper; after being so squeezed, it will 
still retain moisture enough for the purpose. 

To Take out Lights and Half -Lights, — When the color 
is quite dry, touch the parts intended to be taken out 
with a brush charged moderately with water, allow the 
moisture to stay on the paper a few seconds, then apply 
blotting-paper, and quickly rub the part with an old silk 
or other soft rag; do not rub hard, but briskly, and if 
sufficient color is not removed by the first application, 
repeat the water and again rub lightly. By careful use 
of this method, quite a series of modified tones can be 
produced from the lowest to the highest light. 

Lines of light on still water, 
/ Flecks and masses of sea-foam. 

Sharp grasses ^and broken herbage. 

Gates and palings, 

Rocks and stones. 

Light branches of trees, when they stand against 
masses of shadow foliage, 
and many other forms, can be produced quickly in this 
way. The spaces from which the color has thus been 
wholly or partially removed may then be glazed over 
with their local color, taking care not to disturb the 
color of the surrounding parts. Sometimes the point of 



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80 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

a sharp knife is best to take out a very fine high light. 
It is seldom that sea-foam can be adequately represented 
without the addition of Chinese white worked irregularly 
over the spaces so worked upon. 

Sea-gulls against a sky should never be ^' taken out," 
for fear of injuring the tender purity of the sky; they 
should always be put in with Chinese white and their 
under parts touched, when dry^ with shadow color. 

A Good lUvstrative Example of ^^ Taking Ottt." — Sup- 
pose it is desired to represent a mass of broken rocks or 
sea-cliff, their cracks and broken edges, and infinite angles 
of surfaces in light and shade, appearing to defy the 
possibility of reproduction. Draw the mass without 
reference to detail; next, discern the few masses of light 
and shadow covering the whole, and draw outlines of 
these; then look for the direction which the chief mark- 
ings or cracks of the entire mass take, — that is, whether 
perpendicular, horizontal, or oblique; now cover the 
entire space with a wash, say of sepia, tinged with light 
red, rather light; next cover the shadow portions with a 
similar wash, strengthened by adding more sepia; then 
put in a few markings of cracks, etc., in the required 
direction, to indicate the character of the rock; next put 
in, with a little stronger color still, the deepest or darkest 
cracks or fissures, and when dry proceed to take out 
lights and half-lights in varied degrees; to still further 
increase the effect of brokenness and detail, pass the 
brush charged with a thin wash of vermilion and cobalt 
blue over some of the taken-out spaces in the portion of 
the mass in light, and with a wash of crimson lake and 
indigo in the shadow portion. When dry, add a few 
final touches where it may be necessary to give sharpness 
and shadow, and the effect will be one of detail and 
multiplicity, beyond anything which could be obtained 
by the most laborious " niggling." 



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VARIOUS MEANS AND METHODS. 81 

Scumbling. — The effect of distance, where objects are 
indistinctly seen through the intervening vapor, and 
the same effect in gorges and deep cafions, can be pro- 
duced by scumbling, which is executed in the following 
manner: Rub a little Chinese white and neutral gray 
color thoroughly together with as little water as possible, 
and when they are perfectly mixed, with a stiff brush 
rub the color over and into the too distinct objects in 
the distance or chasm, with a circular motion of the 
hand, until the objects are 'partially obliterated; after- 
ward, when the "scumble" is dry, touch the parts in 
places with light tints of local coloring. 

Glazing. — This consists of passing a wash of transpar^ 
ent color over the parts requiring enrichment. Raw 
sienna, Italian pink, and gamboge are all excellent colors 
to use in this way over foliage and grasses lighted up by 
the sun; burnt sienna alone, or mixed with either of the 
foregoing, is admirably adapted to give rich autumnal or 
evening tints upon foliage, etc. 

Never use an opaque color for glazing. The opaque 
and transparent colors in your box may be discerned by 
noticing that some reflect the light and others absorb the 
light. For instance, raw sienna, being a transparent 
pigment, will not reflect the light or appear to shine like 
emerald-green, which, being opaque, reflects the light. 
Glazings should always be thin. 

Softening is the process of washing with clean water 
between the paintings, to which I have referred more 
particularly under Sketching from Nature. It is sur- 
prising to what an extent this can be practiced with very 
heavy paper, such as Whatman's " Griffin Antiquarian," 
and carefully selected pigments. The author remembers 
an occasion, several years ago, when, under very inspiring 
conditions, surrounded by several rollicking, happy, 
Didsbury students, he worked up an "Imperial" drawing 



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82 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

("Rest at Eve," now in the possession of J. Widdicombe, 
Esq., Enfield, London,) with severe application of this 
process. So severely indeed did he apply it, that again 
and again he found himself, after successive washes of 
tender sky and cloud tints, in the kitchen holding the 
drawing under the full flush of the water-tap and rushing 
to dry it again by the big kitchen fire. In this instance, 
the effect has been flatteringly alluded to by many 
critics. 

In adopting this method, be sure always that your 
colors are quite dry before the washing, and never rub 
the brush against the paper; also, take care to absorb 
the surface moisture by applying blotting-paper as 
quickly as possible. 



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CHAPTER VII. 

ON SKETCHING FROM NATURE. 

Commence with the simplest subjects, — an old doorway, 
the stump and branches of an old tree having only a 
little foliage, or a simple cottage, — then advance to a tree 
in full foliage, giving most attention to its outline of 
masses in light and shadow; do not think of painting 
the individual leaves, but only to discern its character, 
so that any one can tell whether your sketch is intended 
for a pepper, an oak, or a eucalyptus tree. (Finished 
detail of foliage is a very advanced stage of the art; you 
are now learning.) Repeat the tree, with a little more 
attention this time to the edges of the masses in light, 
and give touches to the edges which shall best represent 
the form of the leaf. In this second trial sketch put in 
the ground around the tree, with its grasses, or pavement 
border, or road. 

After, say, half a dozen such sketches, change the 
subject to a distant mountain view, putting out of sight 
for a few days the first sketches. This will preserve 
your interest intact, and you will be able with better 
perception to revert to the tree studies, and to discern 
their shortcomings. After you have made your best 
representation of the distant mountain, — not attempting 
to put in all the detail of the intervening landscape, — 
mark out the principal features of it, and indicate them 
with as much freedom of touch as you can command. 

ILLUSTRATION OF METHOD. 

Let the sky be composed of cobalt, brought down to 
the mountain's crown. For the Sierra Madre Mountains 
in an ordinary afternoon light, use first wash of light 
red, orange-vermillion, and French blue. When dry, put 
in the forms of shadows with French blue and light red 

83 



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84 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

(the French blue predominating). Repeat these washes 
if necessary. Use the last wash again to touch in the 
darkest markings of all, and this may be done before the 
second wash is perfectly dry. The foothills should now 
be put in with yellow ocher in their lightest parts or 
surfaces, over which carry a thin wash of Antwerp blue 
or French blue, where green is displayed, and lastly, 
mark the undulations in shadow by various degrees of 
madder brown, Vandyke brown, and Indian red — taking 
care not to use these colors too heavily. Here and there 
will be masses of foliage, which may be put in very 
effectively by a mixture of burnt sienna and French 
blue, varied in places by cobalt and sepia. Distant 
cottages can be ^' taken out" and the spaces tinted with 
the requisite colors, but some will be left white. 

Do not attempt to put in everything you see, or you 
will make the sketch look very weak; only endeavor to 
represent the character of the scene. 

For the foreground, use yellow ocher and light red for 
roads; gamboge for brightest of the grass-patches; gam- 
boge and Antwerp blue for bright greens; Vandyke 
brown and Antwerp blue for deep greens; the dark 
touches may be composed of Vandyke brown, and Van- 
dyke brown and crimson lake, in various degrees of 
strength. When dry, the foreground (if the appearance 
of the herbage is very sappy, as after rain) may be 
glazed in some places with thin raw sienna or Italian 
pink. 

Now, having made several sketches, giving to them 
more or less finish at home, we venture to predict that 
on your examination of them, and comparing them with 
copies which you may previously have made from 
colored studies, you will be struck by the absence of 
force in your sketches, which the finished copies possess. 
This is inevitable at the beginning, for you cannot, at 
this early stage, be expected to see everything which 
exists in the scene which a more practiced eye will 



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SKETCHING FROM NATUBE. 85 

discern, many of which he discerns because he knows 
beforehand they must be there. You have made the grass 
all green, whereas there were bits of brilliant light stand- 
ing against deep shadow masses, and patches of red 
earth peeping between slender blades, which, if seen by 
you and inserted in your sketch, would have transformed 
your tame green meadow. You looked upon that mass 
of rock and saw that it was gray, and so you painted it 
gray, and put more gray upon its shadow side, with 
deeper markings still of gray for crevices and hollows; 
whereas, in reality, there were here and there touches of 
deeper, richer color, and out of the gray there sparkled 
little lights, reflected by sharp angles and atoms of spar. 
Again, you saw the tree was green and its branches and 
stems a pale brown, but did not observe the streaks of 
richer, darker browns at intervals where the bark was 
broken, or where knots cast pretty shadows; nor the 
lines of high light where the sun caught the edges; nor 
the brown shadows in the foliage masses, with their outer 
edges sometimes quite dark against the tender sky, or 
silvery gray of a distant mountain. You will be always 
looking for these things now, and rapidly your work will 
lose its insipidity and " greenery y^^ and become strong by 
the use of colors which you at first overlooked. 

Perhaps this is the best place to emphasize a fact or a 
law which should always be in your recollection, and 
which must guide you in a general way on all occasions 
of landscape-work. 

Distance always partakes of a bluish tint, — green trees, 
drab houses, red roofs, gray mountains, all become 
bluish gray in the extreme distance, and so you must 
paint them. Middle distance partakes more or less of 
soft, warm light, which is represented best by yellow 
ocher and Vandyke brown, and these two colors will be 
found very useful in painting extensive flat middle dis- 
tances, such as prevail in this country. (Not mixed at 



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86 A GUIDE TO WATER-OOLOB PAINTING. 

all times, but working the brown over the yellow to 
express lines of herbage, indentations of sarface, etc.) 
Foregrounds must be full of strength, — this need not 
imply strong or thick color always, because strength can 
be created by contrast. For instance, imagine a fore- 
ground being an uncultivated yard of a simple cottage. 
Paint the ground with yellow ocher and light red, broken 
by touches of madder brown, Vandyke brown, and burnt 
sienna; 'Hake out" a few small pebbles or stones, and 
let there be thrown across the pathway by the cottage a 
hearth-rug, or a table-cover, or shawl be suspended near 
it, with prevailing blue in the pattern, which should be 
painted in with Antwerp blue on the pure white paper, 
and it will be seen how strong a foreground can be created 
by contrasting thin washes of two complementary or 
contrasting colors. 

Now, I shall try to make quite plain to you a method 
by which you may overcome a great diflBculty which 
stands in the way of all beginners in their efforts to 
sketch a landscape from nature. The difficulty consists 
in first determining how much of the landscape must be 
depicted, and then the points of the foreground which 
must mark the base boundary line of your picture, and 
last, but not least, the relative sizes and direction of lines 
which must be used to give correct outlines of the various 
buildings and other objects in the view selected. Of 
course, to the experienced artist these things are deter- 
mined by the laws of perspective, which I am assuming 
you at present only partially apprehend; or even if you 
are acquainted with the rules theoretically, are yet unable 
to easily apply them to the multitudinous objects in an 
extensive landscape. In recommending to you the adop- 
tion of the following simple process, I must not be under- 
stood to underestimate the necessity of your acquiring a 
thorough knowledge of the principles of perspective, and 
the facility of drawing all objects correctly as the founda- 



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SKETCHING FROM NATURE. 87 

tion of all art study and practice, but rather as a method 
by which you will be materially assisted in understanding 
those principles which when technically expressed are at 
first thought difficult and obscure, inasmuch as you will 
be able at any time to demonstrate by actual sight (even 
when you are not using your pencil) the written rules 
and laws. 

• Exximple. — First, supposing your intended picture is to 
be the size of 7 x 10 inches (a handy size for first efforts) ; 
take a piece of cardboard, say about 15 x 18, and cut out 
of its center an aperture the exact size of your intended 
drawing, viz., 7 x 10. Take your seat from where you 
intend to sketch the view, and hold up the cardboard at 
a distance of fourteen or fifteen inches from your eye, 
taking care that it is held perfectly perpendicular, and at 
the exact height at which, with one eye closed, the other 
eye shall be opposite the center of the aperture. Now, 
what is seen through the aperture is just exactly the land- 
scape which it will be best to represent on your paper. 
The rule is, always to make the aperture the exact size of 
the intended drawing, whatever dimensions that may be, 
and to hold it from the eye at a distance just one and a 
half times the length of your picture; hence, for a draw- 
ing ten inches long, hold it fourteen or fifteen inches 
from the eye; for one twenty inches long, hold it twenty- 
eight or thirty inches away. It would make your sketch 
of easy accomplishment now if you were to adopt some 
easy method of fixing the cardboard on a stick driven 
into the ground at the exact spot indicated, so that you 
would at every glance see the positions of the respective 
objects to be drawn. The usefulness and help of this 
simple appliance can be still further increased if lines of 
black thread are passed from side to side and from end 
to end of the cardboard, dividing the aperture into several 
squares; these perpendicular and horizontal threads will 
serve not only to indicate the relative sizes of the objects 



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88 A GUIDE TO WATER-OOLOB PAINTINO. 

at various distances, but will enable you to discern the 
degree of obliquity of the lines of all objects as they 
recede from or approach the foreground, thus presenting 
a very forcible illustration of the laws of linear perspective. 

In drawing all objects presenting distinct and definite 
outline, let your pencil-sketch be clear, sharp, and clean; 
do not attempt to shade with the pencil, as it would 
seriously interfere with the color. In applying the color 
— particularly the foreground colors — remember the tint 
wiU dry lighter than it appears when wet, and in apply- 
ing contrasting tints against or in juxtaposition to each 
other, which is chiefly necessary in the foreground to 
give force or strength, take care the first is dry before 
approaching it with the second. Observe — 

1. That the darkest lines and touches must be used for 
objects in the foreground, and that they diminish in force 
as they recede from the eye; 

2. That shadows are darkest at the point next to the 
object throwing the shadow; 

3. That the picture having strong masses of shadow 
is much more charming and effective than one with weak 
or scant shadows, hence a sketch taken at early morning 
or in the afternoon is more satisfactory than one taken 
about mid-day; 

4. That distances almost invariably partake of a bluish 
or bluish-gray tone, which must be distinctly preserved 
in your color; and 

6, That foreground objects must be represented by 
much stronger tints than are at first generally conceded 
to be necessary. 

To illustrate and enforce this rule: First look at the 
extreme distance of a landscape from a point where there 
are no obstructing lines or color objects, and the positive 
colors of objects in that distance will seem to be appre- 
ciable; then move to a spot where you can view the same 
distance between, say, two near trees, or branches of 



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SKETCHING FROM NATURE. 89 

trees, and you will be struck by the absence of what ap- 
peared to be positive color in those distant objects; they 
will be, by contrast with the strong greens or browns of 
the near trees, reduced to a hazy bluish gray. It is by a 
careful recognition of this principle that very effective 
and characteristic sketches can be rapidly produced, the 
distances being broadly washed in with tender tints of 
bluish or neutral grays and the foreground objects treated 
with strong local coloring. 

As it is inconvenient to attempt an)rthing like "finish" 
to work out of doors, requiring, as it does, " washing," 
sponging, etc., which can only be done with comfort in 
the studio, or under home conditions, practice the habit 
of taking free notes and memoranda, both with pencil 
and color. Indicate certain spaces or objects in your 
drawing by a letter or numeral, and against a corre- 
sponding letter or numeral make notes of the appearance 
or color required. This habit, while enabling you to 
finish your sketch, or to reproduce it at home under easy 
conditions with truthfulness, will serve the still more 
valuable purpose of educating you to a keen perception 
of color and effect, and of emphasizing the beauties which 
nature is ever revealing to her lovers. 

An important remark may be made here, which will be 
very readily understood by most of my readers, and 
which will enable them to determine at times which of 
the several "combinations" of colors they should select 
for certain specific purposes. ( See Table of Combinations. ) 
Imitation of nature is to be considered relatively; it must 
always have reference to the colors or tints which sur- 
round it. This will depend, of course, upon the key in 
which the picture is pitched — precisely as in music. For 
instance, it may be pitched in a brilliant key of light 
and color, when all the colors used will be of that char- 
acter; or it may be desirable to execute it in low or half 
tones, in which, of course, its truthfulness would depend 
on the relative values of all its parts. 



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90 A GUIDE TO WATER-COLOR PAINTING. 

This particular quality or character is one more of 
natural consequence than of educational acquirement. 
It marks the temperament and sympathies of the artist 
frequently, and even distinguishes at times the nation- 
ality and sections of various schools. Let me urge you 
to follow in this the dictates of your natural impulses, 
and not to do violence to your inclinations by adopting 
the style or feeling of any individual artist, however 
much it may be admired or lauded. With diligent 
practice for a few months you will discover your artistic 
inclinations and sympathies, and if you would attain to 
your highest possibilities in art, you will be true and 
devoted to these natural leanings. It may be that the 
smiles of open valleys bathed in sunniness may move 
you to most loving work, or perhaps your nature has 
closer affinity to the shadows of great mountains and the 
solemn isolation of crag and cafion, or you may linger 
longest by the deep-toned surges of the awful sea. Wher- 
ever your silent longings most quickly suggest your 
pencil, there linger at your work. 

It is by scrupulously regarding this sentimental injunc- 
tion, or rather this injunction of sentiment, that you will 
most readily acquire the power of producing one of the 
highest, if not the highest, qualities of a picture, viz.. 
Unity op Effect. 

Without unity of effect, every other quality is next to 
worthless. It is this quality which unites and makes 
valuable all the others; it is this which gives character 
and impression to the whole. 

In the second part of this handbook. Helpful Hints for 
Viewing Nature and Artj I have elaborated4his meaning 
in reference to sentiment, for "unity of effect" is really 
the sentiment, or that which conveys the sentiment, of the 
picture. For illustration: Let us suppose you are paint- 
ing a rural roadside cottage scene, with creeping rose- 
bush or clinging honeysuckle throwing a dappled shadow 
under the veranda roof, and green grasses throwing into 



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SKETCHING FBOM NATURE. 91 

brilliant beauty the crimson, pink, and scarlet clusters of 
geraniums and roses against which they stand; your senti- 
ment would be that of Home, the peaceful dwelling-place 
of loving hearts, where alike the glory of silvery old age 
or the golden shimmer of children's tresses are in keeping 
It would be incongruous here to overshadow that shrine 
of human hearts by any cloud, or even to modify the 
dancing sunlight of a perfect day by a single touch. It 
would be incongruous to introduce a figure draped in the 
stiff proprieties of the city's fashion, but to intensify the 
sweet sentiment of Home you place a cozy reclining-chair 
upon the shaded porch, or amid the emerald leafage of 
the little garden plat, and perhaps a dear old '^ granny" 
in it; or you hang a bird-cage at the open doorway to 
suggest the songster's music, or compose a group of happy 
children at their play. 

Again, supposing your subject is a broad expanse of 
solitude, bounded by the jagged precipices of the ever- 
lasting hills, moving you to awe by its wild desolation 
and its awful silence; then how much more in keeping 
would it be to portray a sky of solemn cloud effects cast- 
ing their shadows on the extensive plain, than to give one 
of azure blue or of glowing color. Every scene in nature 
has its sentiment, and should be represented by appro- 
priate incidents and accessories. Your duty will be to 
discover them, and I confidently promise you that in pro- 
portion to your endeavor will be your success in the poetry 
of Art and your participation in an untold enjoyment. 




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Ivey's J^X Studio 

Monterey and 
eteitottf fiecrttieii Pacific Grove 



West Side of El Carmelo Hotel 

California 



Ptitiate Plipilg intending to adopt the profession 
are given a comprehensive course 
in color principles (applicable to 
both oil and water-color), sketch- 
ing from nature, and technique, 
on the methods of the best English 
and French studios. 

ClaggCg are held throughout the summer months. 
Cetmg on application. 

Address 

J. IVEY 

MONTEREY 
CALIFORNIA 



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STUDIO 

MONTEREY 

CALIFORNIA 

Ivey's Lectures 

FOR CHURCHES 

LITERARY CLUBS 
ART CLUBS 

TEACHERS' INSTITUTES 
ETC. 

1. Seeing the Invisible in Nature 

2. The Poetry of Landscape Art 

3. The Spirit of Beauty in Nature and Art 

4. Fads, Facts, and Fancies About Art 

5. Pages and Pictures from an Artist's Note-Book 

6. An Impressionist Picture of England 

7. The Romance of Monterey Bay 

8. Pen-Pictures of California 

9. Paintings and Painters with each lecture the artist will, if 

desired, place on exhibit his port- 
folio of water-color paintings. 

These lectures have received the highest commendations in 
the i^ress of the large cities of the United States and England. 



J. IVEY 

Ex-Art Superintendent, University of Southern California 

Author of the popular handbook, ^' A Guide to Landscape-Paint- 
ing in Water-Color" 

Illustrator of " Picturesque California " 



Mr. John lyey has been connected with the Pacific Oroye Chau- 
tauqua Assembly for several years past as the head of its art depart- 
ment, and he has appeared regularly upon its lecture platform each 
year. No popular lecturer could be more warmly welcomed. Graphic, 
vivid, a master of the richest English, a true artist, and a poet as well, 
he will charm any audience than hears him. 

Rsv. Thomas Filben, D. D., 
Superintendent Instruction, Pacific Grove Assembly. 



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Liverpool {€n%.) S)attp )Po«t 

An interesting and instnictiye lecture has been delivered in con- 
nection with the Trinity Literary Society, at their usual meeting this 
week, by Professor Ivey, in the Trinity Wesleyan Church, Grove Street. 
The title of the lecture was "The Basis and Poetry of Landscape Art," 
and the gifted lecturer handled the subject with all the grasp of prin- 
ciple, breadth of treatment, and fullness of illustration which were 
natural in so accomplished a professor of the art he was unfolding. 
The lecture occupied over an hour in delivery and was listened to with 
rapt attention throughout. It was an address quite unique of its kind 
in the history of the society, now in its thirty-eighth year. 

In the afternoon Pzofenor John Ivey, who has delighted so many 
Chavtoaqiwb avdieiieet with his walks and talks on art, spoke on " See- 
ing the Invisible in Nature." This time he seemed to captivate his 
audience even more than in the past. The same chaste diction and 
musical rhythm of his descriptions as have always been the charm of 
his lectures were exhibited in a marked degree in this talk. Professor 
Ivey's work in water-color painting is universally considered to be 
among the highest of the art. 



Seattle Jfiott^^nMli%tnm 



" The Poetry of Art," by Professor John Ivey of San Francisco, was 
one of the grandest lectures that has been delivered here. His style is 
that of a true poet-artist. One cannot but think that he could have 
made a great name in literature. 



Bm f raiutoco d^tonide 



The first lecture of the season was given at 8 p. k. by Professor Ivey ; 
subject, ** The Romance of a Year on Monterey Bay." The lecturer was 
in his happiest vein, and his talk was marked by a felicity of expression 
and a delicacy of humor which were deeply appreciated by the audi- 
ence. At the* close of the lecture the public was privileged to see a fine 
collection of water-colors, many of them illustrating Monterey scenery 
which Professor Ivey paints with such assured success. 



Potit ((CiijrO CimriK 



Last night, in the Central Hall of the York Exhibition Building, 
Professor J. Ivey of San Francisco gave a most interesting lecture— 
under the auspices of the Technical Instruction Committee of the cor- 
poration—on " The Basis and Poetry of Landscape Art." Mr. W. F. H. 
Thompson, J. P., presided, and the attendance was fairly good. The 
subject was very ably treated, and the lecturer's remarks were followed 
with close attention. The professor stands in high repute as an artist 
in water-colors, and his collection of pictures in the south gallery re- 
lating to England and California are fine examples. 



PortlanH (Steffontaii 



Of Professor Ivey it is difficult to say whether he is more of ( 
artist in words than with the brush. 



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List of Miscellaneous Publications 

""""^ ...OF... 

THE WHITAKER & RAY COMPANY 

San Francisco 
Complete Deacriptiye Circular sent on application 

Postpaid Pricea 

AdTentnres of a Tenderfoot— H. H. Sauber $1 00 

About Dante— Mrs. Frances Sanborn 100 

Among the Redwoods— Poems— Lillian H. Shuey - - - - 25 

Beyond the Gates of Care— Herbert Bashford - - - - - 1 00 

Backsheesh— Book of Travels— Mrs. William Beckman - - - 1 60 

California and the Califomians— David Starr Jordan - - - 25 

Care and Culture of Men— David Starr Jordan 1 50 

Chants for the Boer— Joaquin Miller 25 

Complete Poetical Works of Joaquin Miller 2 60 

Crumbs of Comfort— AlUe M. Fdker 1 00 

CaUfomla's Transition Period— S.H.Willey • 100 

Doctor Jones' Picnic— S. E. Chapman 75 

Delphine and Other Poems— L. Adda Nichols 1 00 

Educational Questions— W. C. Doub 1 » 

Forty-Nine— Song— Lelia France --.----- 10 

Forget-Me-Nots— Lillian L. Page 60 

GNiide to Mexico— Christobal Hidalgo 60 

Hail California— Song— Josephine Gro 10 

History of Howard Presbyterian Church— S. H. Willey - - 1 00 

Life— Book of Essays— John R. Rogers - 100 

Love and Law— Thos. P. Bailey - - 25 

Lyrics of the Golden West— W. D. Crabb 1 00 

Mcdn Points— Rev. Chas- R. Brown 125 

Man Who Might Have Been— Rev. Robt. Whitaker - - - 25 

IKatka and Kotlk— David Starr Jordan 1 60 

Modem Argonaut— L. B. Davis - - 1 00 

Missions of Neuva California— Chas. F. Carter 1 50 

Pandora— Mrs. Salzscheider 100 

Percy, or the Four Inseparables— M. Lee 1 00 

Personal Lnpressions of Colorado Grand Canyon . - . 1 00 

Rudyard Reviewed— W.J. Peddicord 1 PO 

Seven Ages of Creation 250 

Some Homely Littie Songs— A. J. Waterhouse 1 25 

Songs of the Soul— Joaquin Miller 100 

Story of the Innumerable Company— David Starr Jordan • - 1 25 

Sugar Pine Murmurings— Eliz. S. Wilson 1 00 

Training School for Nurses— A. Mabie 60 

Without a Name— Poems— Edward Blackman 1 00 

Wolves of the Sea— Poems— Herbert Bashford 1 00 

LATEST I88UE8 

Interviews with a Monocle — Leopold Jordan 50 

My Trip to the Orient— Rev. J. C.Simmons .... 150 

Rearing Silkworms— Mrs. Carrie Williams 126 

Western View Series, No. i — San Francisco Views - 15 

Western View Series, No. 9 — Alaska Views - - - - 15 



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UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA LIBRARY 
BERKELEY 

Return to desk from which borrowed. 
This book is DUE on the last date stamped below. 









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MAR 1 9 1956 LU 



REC'D LD 
APR 11 1951 



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